She is 65 years old and her knees ache due to arthritis. But that didn’t stop her from dancing as she tested Covid-19 negative, 19 days after being admitted at Aundh Civil Hospital in Pune. A video clip of the woman, holding a stick in her hand, seen laughing and dancing has gone viral.
District Collector Naval Kishore Ram said,”I have seen videos of people welcoming corona free patient back home. But this is the first time I heard a patient dancing her way out of the hospital. At least in Pune, this could be the first case. This highlights the fact that we should not fear coronavirus, but face it with confidence.”
The woman, a resident of Mangalwar Peth in PMC limit, was brought to Aundh Civil Hosptial from Sassoon Hospital, apparently as the latter had run out of space to admit patients. She was in critical condition and had to be quickly put on oxygen support.
The woman is diabetic, has arthritis, was experiencing breathlessness and was unable to move without the help of a stick when admitted, doctors said. “She spent at least 10 days on oxygen and in the intensive care unit of the hospital,” said Dr Sharmila Gaikwad, one of the doctors who treated her.
“But when the woman became free of corona status after 19 days, the joy on her face was seen to be lived. As she gingerly walked out of the hospital and staff stood by, the woman on her own started dancing….We did not stop her from having her moment. She was extremely happy… She danced to express her joy after overcoming the life-threatening challenge,” said Dr Gaikwad.
While leaving for home, the woman thanked the doctors and the nurses and told them that she survived because of them. “I thought I would die but you people saved my life. I will never forget you all,” the woman told the medical staff as they cheered and clapped.
Sister Priyanka Jadhav, among those took care of the patient, said,”The woman was very worried initially, she was repeatedly asking whether she will get well or not…She used to be bed-ridden for days, we helped her eat food and drink water.”
Dr Gaikwad said since the woman is diabetic, her sugar levels were fluctuating. “Since her sugar levels were fluctuating, she was also facing breathing problem. We had to stabilise her condition with medicine.” She was given a combination low molecular weight heparin and HCQ tablets, a treatment method which was working on serious patients, doctors said.
The doctors also conducted physiotherapy sessions. “The patient has arthritis and her knees used to ache. We gave physiotherapy which helped the pain to ease,” Dr Gaikwad said.
When the elderly woman patient was shifted out of the ICU to the positive patient’s ward, she quickly endeared herself to other patients. “The young patients in the ward used to extend all kind of help to her. They used to give her water and take her to the bathroom. She became popular with the younger lot,” said Dr Gaikwad.
The patient was also very inquisitive. “She used to repeatedly ask her why she was put on saline, why blood was being drawn from her, when is her negative report going to come ?,” Dr Gaikwad said.
The doctors at Aundh Civil Hospital said if a patient remains confident and determined, it helps in their early recovery. “What we have experienced is that if a patient has determination to overcome the ailment, he does so. This is because if you harbour fear or negative thoughts, your body does not respond. Almost all the positive patients are a worried lot. It is only through counselling that they stablise after initially being gripped by extreme fear…,” said Medical officer Dr Prakash Rokde.