She’s 20 years old and fully vaccinated. She went home for the weekend and got Covid-19. She’s one of more than 11,000 Connecticut residents who have had a breakthrough case.
“It’s definitely scaring me that I have these long-term symptoms. I’m having trouble doing my daily exercise routines, I’m having trouble even walking to class and catching my breath. It’s definitely scary and it’s making me think, will I always have these symptoms?” Nicole McIsaac says.
Mcisaac is a junior at Quinnipiac University. She went back home to her family’s house in New York to pack up her clothes for the semester and got Covid-19.
“When I first tested positive I didn’t even know if I could drive myself to get the test I was so sick. When it did come back positive I quarantined in my house for 10 days those first four days. I couldn’t eat. I had no appetite whatsoever, it hurt when I was breathing,” she says. “I didn’t go to a crazy party or a huge setting without wearing my mask and I was completely vaccinated.”
Last week nearly 30% of the new Covid-19 cases were breakthrough cases, according to state data.
“Even with the vaccine I still have symptoms that persist like I’m out of breath easily,” McIsaac says.
She believes if she wasn't vaccinated it would have been much worse.
“If I wasn’t vaccinated and I got this virus, as bad as I did now, I would either be hospitalized or God forbid dead from the virus," McIsaac says.
“Just because you're young doesn't mean you can’t get it as bad as older individuals and my story goes to show that,” she told NBC Connecticut.
“Young people can get all of the symptoms, young people can get none of the symptoms, it can hit them as hard as it hit me.”
MciIsaac says now is not the time for people to let their guard down.
“It does scare me that I still have symptoms persisting even after I went through my quarantine and the Covid left my body,” she says. “Some days I wake up and I still have all the symptoms. Other days I wake up and maybe have one or two.”
“The vaccine is going to prevent serious hospitalization, serious disease and hospitalization and worse outcomes,” Anthony Santella, professor of Public Health Administration at the University of New Haven, says.
Santella says there’s not enough known about the virus to know exactly how everyone will react.
“It’s still too unpredictable for people to act with certainty,” Santella says.
Some people have no symptoms and others get very ill.
“It was unlike anything I’d ever had before. It felt like pneumonia times 100 for me,” McIsaac says.