Healthy 18-Year-Old Warns 'It Can Happen to Anyone' After Contracting Coronavirus

Tarrah Gibbons
April 06, 2020 - 12:33 pm
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An 18-year-old young man wants to send an urgent message to the world about coronavirus.

The student said no matter what age you are, the virus does not discriminate, Good Morning America reported.

Dimitri Mitchell is a freshman at Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He had no underlying health issues prior to showing COVID-19 symptoms on March 13. They began with a cough, which then led to fevers reaching as high as 105 degrees.

"I was bedridden all day, and I felt totally drained, my eyes wouldn't stop watering, I had the worst headache I've ever experienced, and my cough was just getting worse and worse," Mitchell shared.

The college freshman that this is the sickest he has ever felt in his life. He describes that he felt like he was hit by a truck.

Irena Yoder, Mitchell's mother, took her son to the emergency room where they tested him for pneumonia, strep, and the flu. The results all came back negative.

"I was really concerned that it was coronavirus," Yoder said.

According to his mother, the hospital sent him home, reportedly saying he was under 60 years old and would fight off the virus.

Yoder, who works as a lab technician at the hospital where Mitchell was under care, planned on staying home with her son to take care of him.

In an instant, everything changed when Mitchell woke up his mother.

"He was sweating with a fever, his eyes were so swollen," Yoder said. "He was breathing hard. He could barely walk. He could barely speak. He was like, 'Mom, what do I have?'"

Yoder said she was trying to cheer up and calm down her son.

Mitchell went back to the emergency room on March 16. His mother called the Iowa Department of Health, who recommended Mitchell be tested for COVID-19. His results came back positive.

Yoder thought her son would never contract the virus. She said he was healthy and played sports.

"So, what we'll learn [is] it can hit any age of people. It doesn't ask permission," Yoder said.

The World Health Organization (WHO) says people of all ages can be infected by COVID-19, although older people and those with preexisting medical conditions seem to be more vulnerable to severe illnesses stemming from the virus.

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