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Mandy Greco, 13 yrs old

First Dose of Pfizer on 05/28/21


13 yrs old

Q: What was your life like before you got the vaccine?

I was a competitive swimmer training to qualify for fast meets. I also played the drums almost daily, practiced my drawing skills, worked out daily, and looked forward to returning to in person school after being vaccinated. I spent a lot of time with my dog and cat and would also walk my neighbor's dogs almost everyday.

Q: What was your reaction, symptoms, & timeline?

After the second dose was administered, I had a bad headache that went away within a few hours. The next day I felt good until approximately 7:00pm when I was walking my neighbor's dogs. The chest pressure and pain and difficulty breathing came on suddenly during the walk. I went to the ED 3 times within 5 days. It was painful to be in an upright position, I could not walk without feeling extremely winded, I had chest pain that felt like electrical shocks and pressure as if someone was stepping on me, and any type of smoke or car exhaust would trigger a coughing attack. On the 4th ED visit, I had my first experience with a dismissive doctor, who said my symptoms were likely due to stress and emotional factors. He largely based that on his observation that I was able to walk 10 feet to the restroom.

After a few weeks of these symptoms and new symptoms of widespread nerve pain, tingling/hot/cold sensations, and feeling like there was a wall in my chest, I was prescribed a short course of oral steroids, which immediately provided some relief so I could talk more easily, walk a little, and laugh a little. Soon after, I was prescribed a steroid inhaler and Albuterol, which I still take daily. The steroid inhaler provided immediate relief of much of the chest pressure, and I was able to start doing many regular daily life activities such as walk around stores, play the drums for a few minutes, sit in a car to travel, and after a couple more weeks I was able to start swimming again. Most of the many tests I've had have been normal results, with the exception of the PFT showing a reduced total lung capacity until the most recent test in May, which showed it's now within normal range. While the test shows my lung capacity to be normal, I still do not have ability for full exertion in swim races.

Q: What is your life like now, after getting the vaccine?

My life this past year has involved going to different doctors and specialists, trying different types of treatments including acupuncture, speech and language therapy for breathing exercises, opera breathing and singing exercises, neurofeedback, medications and supplements.

Q: Have your symptoms improved?

I've been fortunate that I've continued to improve since the beginning of my adverse reaction and am able to attend school, play the drums, and train with my swim team. I plateaued in improvement a few months ago, but recently I have suddenly noticed major improvements.

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