Some COVID-19 Patients ‘Crash’ During Second Week of Illness


Second-week crash’ is time of peril for some covid-19 patients

by Lennie Bernstein and Ariana Eunjung Cha/Washington Post

There is little consensus among doctors and experts about why the fifth through 10th days, or thereabouts, seem to be so dangerous for some people with covid-19, the disease caused by the virus. But critical care specialists and EMTs alike are aware of this frightening aspect of the disease.

“This second-week crash has certainly been well described, but 2½ months in, why it happens we’re still not entirely sure,” said Ebbing Lautenbach, chief of the division of infectious diseases at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine.

Learning on the fly as they confront the virus, clinicians interviewed by The Washington Post speculated about the influence of an individual’s genes, the virus’s effect on lung tissue, overactive immune responses, blood clotting and even the impact of the ventilators used to save patients’ lives.

There is little, if any, current research to guide them.


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