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Oak Park Woman Says She Contracted Coronavirus Twice

(CBS DETROIT) - The novel coronavirus as we know of has been around for six months, even less in the United States.

Since it's still new, there are many questions surrounding the virus. The main one being can you contract the illness more than once?

Rhea Conley says the virus showed up at two different times in her system.

"On the 23rd of March is when I woke up, shortness of breath, just said I can't take it I'm going to emergency."

Conley says when she arrived at Beaumont Royal Oak, doctors determined she had an upper respiratory infection. Although she had all the symptoms of Covid-19, at that time hospitals were swamped with cases and short on tests. So they told her to assume she had it and self quarantine at home.

"Didn't get tested till April 2, and that was negative," said Conley.

But an antibody test taken about a month later was positive, meaning Conley did at some point have Covid-19. Now fast forward to June, Conley says she was tested again for coronavirus, because an upcoming doctors appointment required testing prior to the visit.

"June 11, took that test, came back positive," she said.

Conley says she was blown away by the positive test, because she had zero symptoms and didn't think the virus could reappear after someone recovered.

So the question is, can someone contract Covid-19 more than once? Doctors say there's no clear cut answer.

"There's really no good data in the US about this, because Asia had the disease before us so they have the most data on this. The data right now looks like you probably don't get a second infection within a short period of time," said Ascension Health Infectious Disease Expert, Dr. Leonard Johnson.  

Johnson says there's a new test being studied in Asia on whether or not remnants of the virus still in the body after recovery, is active or contagious. He says this virus is still new and they're learning more about it all the time. As for Conley, she says she feels fine, and is glad that no one in her family contracting the virus from her.

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