Actress and wellness maven Gwyneth Paltrow says she had COVID-19 several months ago, and that her symptoms have continued to linger.
"I had COVID-19 early on, and it left me with some long-tail fatigue and brain fog," the Academy Award winner, 48, wrote Wednesday on the website of her lifestyle brand, Goop. Then, she added, "In January, I had some tests done that showed really high levels of inflammation in my body." A specialist she turned to "explained that this was a case where the road to healing was going to be longer than usual."
Her description is consistent with what medical professionals colloquially call "long-haulers," individuals "who have a postviral syndrome that really, in many respects, can incapacitate them for weeks and weeks following so-called recovery and clearing of the virus," Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in July during a COVID-19 webinar.
As early as February 2020, when the coronavirus pandemic had caused only about 80,000 infections worldwide, Paltrow already was taking precautions. "En route to Paris," she captioned a masked photo of herself on a flight. "Paranoid? Prudent? Panicked? Placid? Pandemic? Propaganda? Paltrow's just going to go ahead and sleep with this thing on the plane. I've already been in this movie," she wrote, referring to director Steven Soderbergh's 2011 pandemic thriller "Contagion," in which her character inadvertently plays a crucial role in the outbreak of a deadly virus.
Her writer-producer husband Brad Falchuk, 49, the co-creator of "Glee" and "American Horror Story," tweeted in June of contracting the coronavirus.
"It felt like being thrown off a motorcycle and skidding across the asphalt," he wrote. "It hurt to lie down. It hurt to move. My fevers were low but my nerves were on fire. The first week was anguish. The second week was a haze. The third week was exhaustion. … Running up hills is a hobby of mine — and the first night of symptoms I had trouble breathing. … I still can't taste anything and everything smells like burnt cinnamon."
He urged people to "wear that mask — at the very least it will mean you get to keep tasting French fries, smelling roses" and help avoid spreading the virus.