A smoker’s lung shows white lines which are indicative of congestion and scarring while a COVID-19 lung is filled with white Credit: Twitter image (@PGHospice)

If you still think COVID-19 is just flu, here’s some food for your thought. Dr Brittany Bankhead- Kendall, a Texas trauma surgeon took to Twitter to show that it is actually a rare occurrence to see X-Rays of any of her COVID-19 patients coming back without dense scarring.

She tweeted, “Post-COVID lungs look worse than any type of terrible smoker’s lung we’ve ever seen. And they collapse. And they clot off. And the shortness of breath lingers on… & on… & on.”

In a conversation with a leading news daily, the surgeon said that this would be a problem for all survivors and people who have tested positive for coronavirus. Bankhead-Kendall, who is the assistant professor of surgery at the Texas Tech University in Lubbock, has treated many patients since the pandemic first began.

Also Read: A new COVID-19 challenge: Mutations rise along with cases

According to her, patients who had COVID-19 symptoms show a severe chest X-ray every time and those who were asymptomatic shows a severe chest X-ray 70-80% of the time. This is equally feasible for those people who say that they are fine and that they have no issues, added the trauma surgeon.

X-rays of lungs shared by the doctor show that healthy lungs are clean, with a lot of black areas, mainly air. A smoker’s lung shows white lines indicative of congestion and scarring while a COVID-19 lung is filled with white. The doctor also adds that even if one is feeling ok at the present moment, the X-rays are indicative of possible problems in the future.

Although one must know that it is too early to know the extent of COVID-19 impact on the body or whether the scarring will heal, said Bankhead- Kendall. However, she added that it is important to contact a doctor if one experiences shortness in breath after COVID-19 infection goes away.

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