Alyssa Milano Details Her Harrowing Coronavirus Experience

Charmed star Alyssa Milano took to Instagram to share her shocking experience being tested for the coronavirus. Next to a photo of herself wearing a breathing machine, Milano explained her confusing testing results. Milano first noticed that she felt sick in early March, and got tested for the coronavirus. She took two coronavirus tests in March as well as a finger-prick antibody test. All the tests came back negative, despite her symptoms.

Milano returned for more testing after four months, having her blood drawn this time to be tested for antibodies. This time, the tests came back positive, proving she had been ill with COVID-19. While the FDA continues to work to advance the accuracy of coronavirus and antibody tests, the virus's novelty means testing has yet to be perfected (via FDA). Milano hoped to raise awareness about testing inaccuracies, saying, "I just want you to be aware that our testing system is flawed and we don't know the real numbers." She also emphasized the virus was not a hoax.

Having COVID-19 was miserable for Alyssa Milano

Regardless of what her test results said, Milano's memories of her sickness sound miserable. Though she had a low grade fever, none of her other symptoms were mild. "I had never been this kind of sick. Everything hurt," Milano wrote. "Loss of smell. It felt like an elephant was sitting on my chest. I couldn't breathe. I couldn't keep food in me. I lost 9 pounds in 2 weeks. I was confused. Low grade fever. And the headaches were horrible... I also want you to know, this illness is not a hoax. I thought I was dying."

After she healed from the worst of her illness, Milano continued to have symptoms for months afterward, detailing "vertigo, stomach abnormalities, irregular periods, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, zero short term memory, and general malaise." Scientists are still discovering the long-term effects COVID-19 has on the body; survivors have reported numerous issues, including those that Milano reported, as well as hair loss, difficulties with cognition, and diminished cardiorespiratory fitness (via Mayo Clinic). Milano hopes that her experience with the virus can help others, and intends to donate her plasma. She signed off with hopes that her followers "...take care of yourselves. Please wash your hands and wear a mask and social distance. I don't want anyone to feel the way I felt."