Lena Dunham Details Painful Symptoms After Contracting COVID-19

Lena Dunham is sharing her experience with battling COVID-19.

In a lengthy post shared on Friday (July 31), the Girls creator opened up about the severe symptoms she experienced after falling ill with the novel coronavirus earlier this year. “The fact is, the Coronavirus kills people. … But it will also alter the bodies and lived experiences of so many who are infected, in ways they could never have predicted,” Dunham started her post.

As she described, the actress said she fell ill in mid-March with symptoms ranging from achy joints, numbness, fatigue, difficulty sleeping, a cough, and a loss of taste and smell. Still, Lena admitted she “didn’t freak out” at first because she was already accustomed to enduring chronic pain over the years. “But the pain was soon joined by an impossible, crushing fatigue,” she explained. “Then, a fever of 102. Suddenly my body simply...revolted.” 

“This went on for 21 days, days that blended into each other like a rave gone wrong,” Dunham continued. “I was lucky enough to have a doctor who could offer me regular guidance on how to care for myself and I never had to be hospitalized.”

Dunham said she had to self-isolate for an entire month before testing negative for COVID-19. Even in the clear, she began to develop new symptoms. “I had swollen hands and feet, an unceasing migraine and fatigue that limited my every move. Even as a chronically ill person, I had never felt this way,” she added. “The doctor determined I was suffering from clinical adrenal insufficiency - my pituitary gland had almost entirely ceased to function - as well as ‘status migrainosus’ (in human terms, a migraine that just won’t stop).”

As of now, Dunham says, “Doctors don’t yet know enough about COVID-19 to be able to tell me why my body responded this way or what my recovery will look like,” and acknowledged how privileged she is to have access to “exceptional” health care amid the ongoing pandemic.

See her full statement below.

Photo: Getty Images

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