Instructor's AssistantSeptember 5, 2021 at 8:00 am
I haven’t had active covid cases in clinic so far but I supported a close friend who got sick in week 26. I understand you being rattled! I was thinking about the possible complications with covid and pregnancy and very worried, but wanted fiercely to keep the freaking out to myself, have her take the situation seriously but not fall into fear and anxiety. I approached education and advice in terms of prevention and being proactive, and I think that worked well.
She had mild symptoms for about a week – head congestion, clear mucus, body aches, fatigue, loss of smell and taste (only taste she could sense was salty). Not much of a fever – constitutionally she is taiyin deficient / cold – but her usual pale swollen tongue did start showing red spots in the upper jiao portion. When she started wheezing and having difficulty breathing (especially when laying down) I sent her Xiao Qing Long Tang / Minor Blue Green Dragon by Evergreen Herbs (this does not have Ma Huang) with detailed instructions on how to take the granules. About a day and half into the herbs, her breathing freed up. From the beginning I emphasized the importance of eating helpful foods (I sent her soups with bone broth from a nearby Korean restaurant) and was persistent in encouraging gentle movement when she had the energy. I found an easy pregnancy stretching video on Youtube and also shared a qigong video. She tried the qigong but couldn’t really follow it, so I talked her through some moves over the phone and explained how she can modify the movements – slowing down, taking breaths at a rate that is comfortable for her, sitting down when it was too hard for her to do it standing.
I checked in with her daily because I wanted to respond quickly to changes in her condition. After the acute symptoms cleared I advised her to take a garlic supplement (a conservative dose, for one week) as a way to gently invigorate blood.
The rest of her pregnancy was smooth, and she had a healthy baby at 41 weeks and some days. This experience really highlighted for me the special role we have as practitioners. I was surprised that the midwives she was working with and her general physician (who works with a lot of pregnant patients) had any advice for her when she informed them that she was sick with covid.
Good luck, and I hope your patient has a speedy recovery.