Dynasty Star Emma Samms Details Her Months-Long COVID-19 Symptoms, Like 'Panic-Inducing' Fatigue

The actress, who tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in March, has been unable to shake some symptoms

Emma Samms
Photo: David Fisher/Shutterstock

Six months after contracting the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), Emma Samms has been unable to shake some of her symptoms.

Writing in an upcoming issue of Cotswold Life magazine, the former Dynasty star, who played heiress Fallon Carrington Colby in the 1980s soap opera, opens up about her experience with the virus.

According to the Sunday Times, Samms, 59, tested positive for COVID-19 in March, though she was never admitted to the hospital. To this day, she continues to suffer from debilitating fatigue.

"I've been hugely frustrated to learn that there is no 'pushing through' COVID," she said. "Fatigue, as a symptom, sounds almost Victorian but this fatigue isn't about feeling sleepy, at least not for me. It feels like one of those marathon runners that you see with wobbly legs and unfocused eyes, only to collapse on the ground moments later."

The British actress said activities like gardening for a few minutes or having a phone conversation can leave her exhausted and needing to lie down.

"This panic-inducing level of fatigue has been startling and immensely compromising," she said. "And it fluctuates. I improve slightly, have a couple of good days, assume I am on the road to recovery, only to go right back to feeling horrendous."

There is little research on the emerging condition, which has been nicknamed "long COVID" and is similar to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

"Initially, 'Try to push yourself a little more each day' was the infuriating advice," Samms said. "Fortunately, as 'long COVID' is being seen more and more in non-hospitalised patients, and its similarity to chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) has been noted, the recommendations are the opposite."

"CFS patients and their doctors have been advising long-COVID support groups and warning that too much activity can cause something called 'post-exertional malaise,'" she continued. "Hopefully, any research into long COVID will also be beneficial to the CFS patients who have been fighting for help and recognition for far too long."

"I am not allowing myself to think this is permanent because nobody knows," she added.

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