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COVID-19, Heart Attack & Stroke: The Incredible Story of San Diego Recovery

After a three-month hospitalization with COVID-19, during which he suffered a heart attack and stroke, 61-year-old Hector Reinoso was discharged from La Jolla Hospital in San Diego on July 24, writes NBC San Diego.

Photo: Shutterstock

“Three long months in the hospital with sadness and uncertainty,” said Reinoso's daughter Bridget.

Reinoso, 61, is an energetic, positive person who loves his grandchildren.

“They are my life, they are my stars,” says my grandfather about them.

Photo: screenshot nbcsandiego.com

The Reinoso family was not surprised when Hector continued to work during the pandemic as he was considered an important worker and was always dedicated to his work. However, everything changed dramatically when he fell ill.

“On the last day when he was at home, he started coughing up blood,” Bridget said, “that's when we got really scared and thought: we need to take him to the hospital right now.”

On May 6, Hector was admitted to the intensive care unit in La Jolla after testing positive for COVID-19, but what followed came as a shock to the Reinoso family.

Photo: screenshot nbcsandiego.com

“After three days in the intensive care unit, he had a heart attack and was clinically dead for four minutes,” Bridget said.

Hector suffered a heart attack and also suffered a minor stroke.

“All these events were devastating for the family, because we could not be close, - said Bridget. “You know, I think it's easier if families can be physically close and provide support or just feel that you are closer to a loved one.”

On the subject: Recovering doesn’t mean healthy again: how patients surviving COVID-19 feel after months

Due to hospital regulations, visitors were not allowed during the pandemic. Despite the fact that the man was physically separated from his wife, children and grandchildren, his family constantly called him and encouraged him.

“The thing that really helped me walk this path and keep my spirits up - I was going to get through it all,” Reinoso said.

On June 6, Reinoso was transferred to a specialized hospital - he was beginning to recover. On July 24, Hector was discharged from the hospital. He said that he and his entire family have tested negative for COVID-19.

“I'm still fighting, but, you know, you gradually get stronger,” Reinoso said.

Photo: screenshot nbcsandiego.com

His recovery will be a long process while he heals from the effects of the virus, heart attack and stroke. Bridget said her father is working to regain strength and balance so he can walk and breathe without the aid of an oxygen tube.

“He's recovering thanks to nurses, doctors, who fight alongside patients every day,” Bridget said.

On the subject: Loss of memory, amputation of fingers, panic attacks: how COVID-19 changed the life of recovered

She hopes her father's story motivates other families who are fighting the coronavirus to stay positive and keep fighting. She also encourages all healthy people to abide by all proper guidelines during a pandemic.

“I am living proof that even under these conditions you can still win,” Reinoso said.

Miscellaneous In the U.S. coronavirus Special Projects COVID-19 coronavirus treatment

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