DIYARBAKIR, Turkey

A doctor who works at a hospital in eastern Turkey has narrated the respiratory difficulties his patients experienced due to novel coronavirus.

A medical doctor of anesthesiology and reanimation department at Dicle University in Diyarbakir, Mahir Kuyumcu is among many other medics fighting against COVID-19.

Treating COVID-19 patients at a pandemic hospital, Kuyumcu said they have been going through a difficult process since March when Turkey confirmed the first coronavirus case

“We have served approximately 300 patients so far,” he told Anadolu Agency.

“Older patients need more intensive care, but in this process and especially recently, we have started to see young patients in intensive care,” he said.

According to Kuyumcu, the number of young patients has increased.

“We have patients who died at a young age, and also have patients who survived at the age of 70,” he added.

“Among the patients who were taken under intensive care during this period, there were also patients who experienced incredible respiratory distress due to oxygen starvation, and we saw that fear in their eyes with oxygen starvation,” Kuyumcu explained.

“In this difficult period, some patients really cling to life. When they do not resist treatment and help us, we get better results from those patients,” he added.

‘I want to live’

Kuyumcu gave an example of young and older patients receiving treatment together in the intensive care unit.

The young patient is still under intensive care, and helped the elderly patient hope for recovery, who is now discharged, he added.

The lungs of the old patient were worse while the younger patient had relatively better ones, he said.

“‘I want to live, please help me,’ said our older patient and complied with the treatment we used while our young patient gave up hope very quickly,” he recounted. “We had a lot of difficulty in that patient, we had a lot of trouble,” he added.

“Coronavirus patients cannot actually breathe, or their breath is not enough for them. If people could see a patient fluttering while they were suffering from respiratory distress, they wouldn’t take off their masks,” he said.

Across the world, COVID-19 has claimed almost 904,500 lives in 188 countries and regions since last December.

The US, India, Brazil, Russia, and Peru are currently the worst-hit countries.

Nearly 28 million COVID-19 cases have been reported worldwide, with recoveries exceeding 18.8 million, according to figures compiled by the US-based Johns Hopkins University.

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