Monoclonal antibody remedy has been a big improvement within the struggle in opposition to COVID-19. (Chris Clark | Spectrum Well being Beat)

Anybody coping with a constructive case of COVID-19 could surprise: When ought to I search care? Or make a visit to the emergency division?

The reassuring information is that most individuals testing constructive with the omicron pressure of COVID-19 will endure delicate signs of an higher respiratory sickness—fever, congestion, and cough—that may be handled at dwelling.

Most will get higher on their very own, stated Josh Kooistra, DO, senior vp and chief medical officer of Spectrum Well being West Michigan.

“Until you will have underlying medical circumstances or superior age, most definitely you will just do tremendous with COVID-19,” he stated.

Usually, these with a fever ought to bear in mind to remain properly hydrated. And take acetaminophen for fever and physique aches.

However as hospitals throughout the U.S. are full with COVID-19 sufferers, there’s no denying an an infection may cause critical sickness. The pandemic has killed greater than 860,000 Individuals and 5.5 million individuals worldwide.

Dr. Kooistra mentioned the signs that ought to immediate these with COVID-19 to hunt emergency care or contact their main care supplier.

Extreme hassle respiratory

“Shortness of breath is the foremost symptom we deal with once we are taking a look at severity of sickness,” Dr. Kooistra stated.

Shortness of breath may be categorized as extreme, reasonable or delicate.

Shortness of breath is taken into account extreme when it happens when an individual is just sitting nonetheless, or at relaxation. The particular person could not be capable to communicate in full sentences.

“That’s an indication of significant sickness that it’s worthwhile to go to the emergency division to get checked out,” Dr. Kooistra stated.

It may be an indication of acute respiratory misery syndrome, a life-threatening lung situation.


Shortness of breath is taken into account reasonable when it happens throughout regular actions round the home, resembling cooking dinner or tackling delicate house responsibilities.

If that occurs, it is best to at the very least let your main care supplier know.

And when you’ve got further threat components, resembling weight problems, diabetes or underlying lung illness, “it is best to search care within the emergency division,” Dr. Kooistra stated.


Delicate shortness of breath could happen when strolling up a few flights of stairs.

“That’s much less regarding if you’re in any other case wholesome. It’s a symptom that some sufferers with COVID-19 will get,” Dr. Kooistra stated. “If they’re in any other case wholesome, they will in all probability keep dwelling and monitor their signs. It’s a good suggestion to test in together with your well being care supplier.”

Different emergency signs

The Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention additionally recommends in search of emergency medical care, both by calling 911 or going to the emergency division, within the following conditions:

  • Persistent ache or stress within the chest
  • New confusion
  • If the affected person can’t be woke up or keep awake
  • Bluish lips or face

Monoclonal antibody remedy

Some sufferers could qualify for monoclonal antibody remedy, the primary COVID-19 remedy granted emergency use authorization by the U.S. Meals and Drug Administration for outpatient care.

To be thought of for this remedy choice at a Spectrum Well being location, sufferers should be 12 years of age or older, weigh at the very least 88 kilos and meet every of the next preliminary standards:

  • Constructive COVID-19 check
  • COVID-19 associated symptom(s) current for seven days or much less
  • Affected person isn’t hospitalized
  • Affected person has threat components that improve probability of hospitalization.

When you have examined constructive for COVID-19 and assume monoclonal antibody remedy could also be best for you, name 616.391.0351 to find out if you’re eligible.

Anti-viral remedy choices

Anti-viral remedy drugs are an choice for many who don’t meet the standards for monoclonal antibody remedy.

Two new oral drugs are actually out there on a really restricted foundation: molnupiravir and Paxlovid.

These aren’t but broadly out there however quickly will probably be throughout West Michigan, Spectrum Well being infectious illness specialist Liam Sullivan, DO, stated.

“These are anti-viral therapies that individuals can take to assist cut back the chance of hospitalization and threat of significant sickness from COVID-19,” he stated. “For individuals to learn from this remedy, they should attain out to their physician as quickly as they check constructive.”

To be eligible a affected person must have signs for lower than 5 days. Meaning the sooner the higher. A immediate prognosis on the first onset of signs is crucial.

These drugs, out there solely by way of prescription out of your physician, are in very restricted provide proper now, Dr. Sullivan stated.

Contact your main care doctor or name the monoclonal antibody remedy middle at 616.391.0351 to find out if you’re eligible.

Don’t delay care

For any well being emergency, sufferers mustn’t keep away from or delay medical care due to fears of COVID-19.

“We are able to present protected care, whether or not you will have COVID-19 or not,” Dr. Kooistra stated.

Docs have seen circumstances the place sufferers postponed a visit to the emergency division for a life-threatening situation, resembling a coronary heart assault or stroke, and suffered penalties as a result of they delayed care.

“It is much better to hunt medical care and get the eye you want than to keep away from that care since you are nervous about COVID-19,” he stated.


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