Mary Sitton, RN
My Story – COVID-19
Clinical Manager, MHP Plasticand Cosmetic Surgery
I would like to introduce myself. My name is Mary Sitton and I am a Registered
Nurse & Clinical Manager at MHP Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery. I also
work PRN in the ACC Unit at Major Hospital. Over the last several weeks,
many of us have experienced and continue to experience high levels of
stress and anxiety with the day to day changes involving Covid19. With
the number of positive cases, sick patients and deaths increasing daily,
this leaves many of us worrying about what to do if we become sick. With
that said, I would like to share my personal story with the Coronavirus
and what I experienced. I want others to know, if you do get sick, there
is light at the end of the tunnel.
My story begins the week after all MHP employees began wearing masks and
goggles for all patient contact. The week before I became ill, we were
still seeing patients daily. We had reduced our schedule to only essential
visits but were still seeing a relatively full schedule. My week ended
like every other week on Thursday, March 19. I felt normal with no concerns
whatsoever. We had seen many patients that week but I wore my PPE and
we thoroughly sanitized the rooms after every patient.
On Saturday, March 21, I woke up with a constant, scratchy feeling in my
throat. I didn’t think much about it due to weather changing and
I had no other symptoms. Sunday, I developed a minor cough, but it was
not worrisome. I went to work on Monday and as the day progressed, my
cough became intense. At this time, I still had no other symptoms. I went
home after work, took some OTC cough suppressant and went to bed. I woke
up Tuesday, March 21, with uncontrollable coughing, feverand body aches.
I called into work knowingI was going to be off for 7 days regardless
of what my diagnosis was because I had a fever. I was in bed all day Tuesday
and all day Wednesday only getting up to get something to drink and use
By Wednesday my symptoms had increased and along with coughing, fever and
body aches, I developed stomach pain and diarrhea that lasted 24 hours.
At this point I was in tears, I felt miserable, and had never coughed
so much in my life. Luckily, my co-workers and friends at work were in
constant contact with me, texting me multiple times throughout the day
to get updates on my condition. I was being advised to get tested for
Coronavirus because I was a “presumptive, positive case” based
on my symptoms.
By the end of day two, Dr. Paula Gustafson offered to write an order for
me to be tested at Lilly so I could avoid going into one of our clinics.
I called that evening and made an appt for Thursday, March 23 to be tested.
Some of my symptoms had subsided by Thursday, my fever had decreased to
under 100 and no diarrhea. Yea!! My husband drove me to the testing center,at
Lilly,we were both masked, and the process was very streamlined. We stayed
in the car for the entire process, the staff would show a telephone number
and we weredirected to call that number and that’s how we communicated.The
swab itself was not painful, just uncomfortable foronlyseconds, and they
swabbed both nostrils. The physician that swabbed mewas very kind and
made me feel at easeduring the entire process. She was wonderful!
I went home after the swab and returned to bed, awaiting my results. We
were given information to access our results online after 24 hours. By
Friday, I was feeling somewhat better, fever free but still coughing quite
a bit. By 11:20pm on Friday night I received my results;negative. I was
relieved to get a negative result,but it is believed I waited too long
to test positive and had recovered by the time of my test. I continued
to improve over the weekend and remained fever free.I returned to work
on Monday feeling much improved. I still had some lingering cold symptoms
for an additional week afterward. I can gladly say as of Monday, April
6, I feel 100% back to normal.
I’m sharing my story because I want others to know that even if you
are doing all the right things, you can still get sick, however, the likelihood
of recovery is still very high. I eat right, drink lots of water, exercise
every day, used proper PPE but I still got sick. But I also fully recovered.
I can’t express enough thanks to my family, co-workers and friends
at work for their daily texts and constant support. We are all in this together!