Lena Dunham Says Her COVID-19 Experience Felt ‘Like a Rave Gone Wrong’ (Photo)

After suffering from the virus for 21 days, the actress says her symptoms still have not completely disappeared

Lena Dunham shared her experience battling the coronavirus as someone who suffers from chronic illness, saying her body “revolted” and everything felt like a “rave gone wrong.”

The actress revealed that she got sick in mid-March that began with “achy joints,” which was quickly joined “by an impossible, crushing fatigue. Then, a fever of 102. Suddenly, my body simply… revolted. The nerves in my feet burned and muscles wouldn’t seem to do their job. My hands were numb. I couldn’t tolerate loud noises,” she explained.

“I couldn’t sleep but I couldn’t wake up,” she added. “I lost my sense of taste and smell. A hacking cough, like a metronome keeping time. Inability to breathe after simple tasks like getting a glass of water. Random red rashes. A pounding headache right between my eyes. It felt like I was a complex machine that had been unplugged and then had my wires rerouted into the wrong inputs. This went on for 21 days … days that blended together like a rave gone wrong.”

After a month of self-isolating and measuring her oxygen levels, she tested negative for COVID-19. But even then, her symptoms didn’t disappear.

She says she still had “swollen hands and feet, an unceasing migraine and fatigue that limited my every movie. Even as a chronically ill person, I had never felt this way,” Dunham continued.

A doctor determined she was suffering from clinical adrenal insufficiency, and her arthritis flared up and required an immune-modulator drug. “To be clear,” she said. “I did NOT have these particular issues before I got sick with this virus and doctors don’t yet know enough to tell me why exactly my body responded this way or what my recovery will look like.”

Although she was reluctant to share her story because she didn’t want to add her voice “to a noisy landscape,” she said she felt compelled to chronicle her experience given the carelessness with which people in the U.S. are treating the virus.

“I feel compelled to be honest about the impact this illness has had on me, in the hopes that personal stories allow us to see the humanity in what can feel like abstract situations,” she wrote. “I know I am lucky; I have amazing friends and family, exceptional healthcare and a flexible job where I can ask for the support I need to perform. … BUT not everybody has such luck, and I am posting this because of those people. I wish I could hug them all.”

In 2019, Dunham revealed she had Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, a chronic disease that affects the joints and skin. She also previously shared that she suffers from endometriosis.

Other Hollywood figures who have shared their COVID-19 experiences include Idris Elba, Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson, Pink, Daniel Dae Kim and Bryan Cranston.

See Dunham’s post below (scroll within it to read her entire story).

View this post on Instagram

My Covid Story

A post shared by Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) on

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