A man in his 20s was in hospital for nearly a week after catching Covid and being struck with “every symptom”.
25-year-old James Cook from Sheffield caught the virus when he and a group of friends went out for a meal to celebrate his girlfriend’s birthday, according to Yorkshire Live.
All of the friends who attended were later diagnosed with Covid.
But Mr Cook was very badly hit. His symptoms were so severe that he had to spend six days in hospital having oxygen therapy.
The otherwise healthy young man developed “every symptom” of the virus and even developed Covid-19 pneumonia.
Mr Cook is urging all his friends to get vaccinated, saying his experience proves young people can get very sick from catching Covid.
He said: “All of us who went out for the meal got it. We were all aged 25 to 28 with no underlying conditions, but I seemed to get it really badly, the doctors said I had every symptom.
“At first it seemed like a really bad cold and I tried to tough it out, but it got worse and worse and reached the point where I could not breathe properly and my girlfriend had to wake me up because my breathing was so shallow and fast it was scaring her.
“She had to call an ambulance and I was taken to hospital and I was in there for a week. I felt physically terrible, I was wheezing, I felt dizzy, there was fluid on my lungs. Even after leaving hospital I still feel dreadful and have had to spend four or five days in bed.”
Mr Cook, who regularly runs, plays football and goes to the gym, said that he would consider himself to be “fairly fit” and believed himself to be “low risk” as he was young and active.
“I hadn’t had the vaccine because I was really busy, I’d just started a new job and like an idiot I thought I would wait until everything had settled down a bit”, he said.
But now, the 25-year-old is urging all of his friends to make sure that they get fully vaccinated against Covid as soon as they are able to.
He said: “This is not something to be taken lightly, and you shouldn’t assume it won’t make you ill just because you’re young and healthy.”
Mr Cook was treated for six days at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital in Sheffield and the hospital’s chief nurse, Professor Chris Morley, said that staff have seen a “steep rise” in the number of people being admitted for Covid-19 in the last 10 days.
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He said: “We have almost 50 people in hospital compared to single figures a couple of weeks ago and some of those are in ITU.
“The majority are under 50 and have not been vaccinated. As we begin to mix even more from next week, I would urge people to make getting vaccinated a priority this weekend and continue to take precautions in terms of keeping your distance from others wherever possible, wearing masks inside and in crowded places and regular handwashing or gelling hands.
“Covid has definitely not gone away and we all want a Covid-19 free summer.”
Anyone who is over 18 and wanting to get their Covid vaccine can turn up at the Octagon Centre on the University of Sheffield Campus, or Sheffield Arena, from 8am to 5pm Monday to Sunday.
There is no need to book and staff have said there will be “no queues” with the whole process taking just minutes.