Toronto star James Cunningham opens up on his coronavirus experience

Toronto hooker James Cunningham has lifted the lid on his dealings with coronavirus.

The 26-year-old spoke to GP clinical lead Dr Daniel Atkinson about his experience with the virus for Treated.com.

The Wolfpack playmaker was able to speak with Dr Atkinson by creating an account for Treated’s online video consultation service.

How does having coronavirus affect you?

Cunningham reported that he went to the Toronto Wolfpack training ground on a Monday morning, feeling slightly under the weather, and was advised by the team doctors and physios to go home and immediately start self-isolating.

He said: “So, I didn’t actually get tested for it but during the self-isolation, the first two or three days my symptoms just got a lot worse, I was exhausted, my fever got really bad, I got like a really aggressive cough afterwards as well.”

The symptoms Cunningham describes are consistent with what many people experience when suffering with the new virus. A fever and a new cough, which is both dry and continuous in nature, are the main symptoms of coronavirus. People experiencing these symptoms should self-isolate for a minimum of seven days, and speak with their relevant health authority for further advice.

What advice can be given to other people about coronavirus?

Cunningham said: “For me personally, I can’t stress enough how important it is to stay indoors and just not spread the virus, because I’m an athlete and I was really struggling.

“I’m supposed to be a fit guy, and I was really struggling, couldn’t get out of bed. I feel like vulnerable people would really struggle with this virus, and for someone who’s supposed to be in good health, and so fit and healthy, it affected me so much.

“I can’t reiterate enough how important it is to stay at home and follow the government’s advice.”

Dr Atkinson replied: “It would appear that even some fit and healthy young people can experience the severe symptoms of coronavirus. This is still a very new virus, and there’s still a lot yet to be understood about it. That’s why it’s so important that we all do our bit, and self-isolate for as long as is necessary.”

Has Cunningham made a good recovery?

He continued: “I was inside for the 14 days, but I was still a little bit feverish so I got in touch with the physios and the doctor at Toronto, and I just made the decision myself that I was going to stay indoors for an extra few days.

“Then when my symptoms subsided and got a little bit better, like I’ve been out for a couple of walks now. It’s nice to get out of the house and get a bit of fresh air, because it’s hard being stuck indoors.”

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