Patient One: First U.S. Coronavirus Case Suffered Pneumonia, Recovered

Coronavirus microscope (Tolga Akmen / AFP / Getty)
Tolga Akmen / AFP / Getty

The New England Journal of Medicine has published a paper about the first patient known in the U.S. to have contracted coronavirus. He suffered nausea, stomach problems, and pneumonia, but recovered almost completely.

The March 5 paper notes that the patient is a 35-year-old male near Seattle, Washington, who had traveled to visit relatives in Wuhan, China, and took himself to an urgent care clinic on Jan. 19 after suffering a fever and cough.

He was hospitalized, and his symptoms remained stable for several days, aside from loose bowel movements, until the fifth day — the ninth day of the illness — when he showed signs of pneumonia and was given oxygen. He was given various different drugs and had begun to recover by his eighth day in hospital — the twelfth day of illness.

“As of January 30, 2020, the patient remains hospitalized. He is afebrile, and all symptoms have resolved with the exception of his cough, which is decreasing in severity,” the paper noted.

Coronavirus appears to affect different people in different ways. As Dr. Anthony Fauci noted in another paper, there seem to have been no infections in children younger than 15. People over 60, however, appear more vulnerable.

The study of the first patient’s recovery suggests that other medicines may help alleviate the symptoms of the illness, even if a coronavirus vaccine is not yet available.

South Korea reported Tuesday that new coronavirus cases had declined for the fourth day in a row. The country has implemented an aggressive program of testing and “social distancing.”

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He earned an A.B. in Social Studies and Environmental Science and Public Policy from Harvard College, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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