Last month, Brisha Brichelle took herself to the hospital when she noticed something wasn't right.
“I was experiencing numbness on my entire left side and extremely fast heart palpitations," she said.
The Mansfield mother and grandmother said she was given a COVID-19 test, MRI and CT scan, but nothing turned up. Earlier this week, she experienced the same symptoms again, but they had worsened.
Brichelle went back to the hospital to get tested for the coronavirus. The test came back positive, but she was also given another MRI and CT scan.
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"They found a swelling on my pituitary gland ... a tumor on my pituitary gland that I now have to go and find out if it’s malignant or benign," Brichelle said.
She said she was admitted into the intensive care unit at Methodist Mansfield Medical Center, where doctors are monitoring her heart.
"I’m concerned about the brain tumor or pituitary gland tumor — I'm not going to say more so than COVID because if I’m at the end of COVID then this is great — but I could very well be at the very beginning and I don’t know what is to come," Brichelle said.
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The 49-year-old said she's experiencing brain fog, but doesn't know if it's from COVID-19 or the tumor. She said she is starting to stretch for her breath, but it's nothing compared to what she has seen with other patients.
"I have heard people exasperating, I’ve heard people gasping for their life and I’ve heard a code to where a person didn’t make it and so I don’t want to be that person," she said. "I don’t know if everyone who is diagnosed with COVID will be as blessed as I am as of now and be asymptomatic so it seems. I don’t know if it’s going to progress and I may be worse later. My prayer is that I’m already at the end of it."
She described busy hallways with patients.
"That’s why I want to go home — so someone in a more dire need can have my bed," Brichelle said.
She said she's been hesitant about getting the COVID-19 vaccine, but had scheduled an appointment for Monday, the same day she got sick.
"I’m leaning more toward the vaccination now, more than ever, especially knowing it has the potential and propensity to take me out," she said. COVID-19 "doesn’t pick and choose, it goes where it goes and if you're not protected in one way or another we’re just open to receive.”