Doubts lead to intensive care

In intensive care units, people are fighting for the lives of those infected with corona. Most of them are not vaccinated. Photo: dpa Photo: Fabian Strauch

Verena Cromm’s husband lies on his stomach all the time. He wears a nose mask and is on ventilators. Doctors say he’s not out of the woods yet. It could still tip over. Verena Cromm is 55 years old. Her husband celebrated his 57th birthday on November 13 in a hospital intensive care unit. Both contracted the coronavirus at the end of October. Nothing is known about his previous illness.

The couple lives in Hambrücken, a municipality in the district of Karlsruhe. “I was not well disposed towards the vaccine,” she says. You lack experience with new vaccines. Side effects such as thrombosis or inflammation of the heart muscle, which have been reported in the media, fuel their doubts and strengthen their opinion. Verena Cromm works in a dental practice.

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She says that, like so many people, she learned from the press, Facebook and other social media. She and her husband have moved away from lateral thinkers. Nevertheless, the two slipped into their opinion formation in a parallel world. “We strayed onto the internet and put up an in-house stop sign against vaccination.” They allowed things in their opinion that are not understandable with normal common sense. “How could we be so lost?”

Confidence in a healthy lifestyle

Instead of drugs and vaccines, the couple is confident in themselves and their lifestyle: lots of exercise, healthy fats, almost no potatoes, low carbs, low meat. “Healthy lifestyle. We felt well positioned and looked like we were living in full bloom,” says Verena Cromm. Both are open to homeopathy and medicine. Your hopes rest on vaccination with an inactivated vaccine. It should be approved soon. So they too want to be vaccinated.

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But at the end of October, the healthy lifestyle and the hope of getting there over time are not enough. Cromm assumes that her husband was infected by a colleague during lunch. “He had a viral load there, it was tough.” And that was enough to infect Verena Cromm too. First, the two cold symptoms appear – cough, exhaustion, headache and body aches, they are freezing and sweating. But the man’s health deteriorated rapidly after five days. “He could barely stand, wasn’t eating and it was getting harder and harder to breathe.”

Cromm rushes to corona training with her husband. Staff on site refused entry to the couple. Verena Cromm insists on an investigation. Oxygen saturation was correct, listening to the lungs, the doctor saw nothing abnormal. She prescribes a cortisone spray for Verena Cromm’s husband. “He didn’t have the strength to inhale the spray and immediately coughed. He became short of breath.” The two endure another day. Then she alerted an ambulance. “He said my husband was a real guy and he didn’t need to go to the hospital yet.”

hands are blue

The next day, his condition gradually worsened. He can barely climb stairs and breathes shallowly. Another day later, Cromm’s man’s hands are blue and cold. She calls an ambulance. Her husband was treated in the vehicle in front of the house for three quarters of an hour. Meanwhile, the assistants try to find a hospital for the patient. “Nobody wanted to record it.” Capacity is tight. Finally, a hospital in Karlsruhe accepts.

In the hospital, the man comes to the Corona ward. The CT scan shows that the lungs have been attacked. His health has been up and down all week, he is afraid of being plunged into a coma. “Doctors don’t get carried away with any prognosis,” says Cromm. The slightest effort, such as sitting down or standing up, makes her short of breath. One parent is allowed to come to the Corona service per day. Visitors wear full protection, gloves, balaclava, two lab coats, FFP3 mask, safety glasses. Doctors are encouraging. “They’re also trying to calm me down. It’s a better way to pass through time.”

Apologies for the behavior

Her husband’s illness tripped a switch on her, says Verena Cromm. “I deeply regret that it took this incident in the first place. I am so cleansed.” She apologized to everyone and to God for her behavior, she said. She and her husband never thought an infection would take such a course. “We didn’t want to believe it affected healthy people like that.”

Verena Cromm has a relatively gentle background compared to her husband. Dry cough, fatigue and taste irritation. “I can’t eat anything sweet or salty right now.” She is tired and has no appetite. If there are no medical reasons, there is nothing more to be said against vaccination. She is now considered cured. She is certain that she will be vaccinated as soon as it becomes necessary – regardless of the vaccine.

Often at the clinic

Corona data from several federal states indicate a significantly higher proportion of new infections among the unvaccinated. Although unvaccinated people are probably tested more frequently, the values ​​from the expert point of view still allow a rough assessment separated by vaccination status. According to the most recent data, for every 100,000 people in the unvaccinated age group of 18-59, there were six times as many hospitalizations for Covid-19 as in the vaccinated age group. dpa

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