In a new video posted on social media, Alyssa Milano demonstrates the severe hair loss she has sustained as a result of a coronavirus infection four months ago
Despite the fact that as of August 10, over 5 million Americans have tested positive for COVID-19 and 163,000 lives have been lost, there are still people roaming the streets without masks, partying with strangers at bars, and vacationing on packed beaches across the country. However, if symptoms like shortness of breath, fever, headaches, vertigo, and spending weeks hooked up to a respirator aren’t enough to pique your concern, coronavirus survivor Alyssa Milano has issued a PSA detailing her experience with another lingering symptom of the virus — serious hair loss.
Milano, who has been experiencing symptoms from the highly infectious virus since March, shared a video on Instagram over the weekend giving fans a visual of the severe hair loss she has been enduring four months post-infection.
“I just wanted to show you the amount of hair that’s coming out of my head as a result of COVID,” she said in the video, brushing her hair with a detangling brush as clumps of her mane are trapped in the bristles.
“One brushing, this is my hair loss from COVID-19,” she said, holding up a chunk to the camera. “Wear a damn mask.”
While hair loss isn’t one of the more common symptoms of the virus, according to a recent survey conducted by Survivor Corp and shared on the group’s Facebook page, 27% of patients classified as “long haulers” — those suffering prolonged symptoms of the virus — reported hair loss.
CBS reports that a number of people detailed their experiences, many similar to Milano’s. One declared her hair had been falling out in “massive clumps” several months after testing positive. “My hair is so thin and looks like there isn’t an end in sight to this hair shedding,” she wrote.
Another explained that after positive tests as far back as March and April, she has recovered. However, she is still suffering from hair loss. “But the reason I’m posting is, for the last month, my hair has been falling out in large clumps every day,” she wrote. “I had long, thick hair, but now it’s very thin. I’ve been so sad about it.” The woman shared several photos of clumps of hair she said fell out of her head.
Last week, Milano revealed other details about her ongoing health struggles, including weight loss, “vertigo, stomach abnormalities, irregular periods, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, zero short term memory, and general malaise” as well as other typical COVID symptoms.
“I had never been this kind of sick,” she wrote. “Everything hurt. Loss of smell. It felt like an elephant was sitting on my chest. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t keep food in me. I lost 9 pounds in 2 weeks. I was confused. Low grade fever. And the headaches were horrible. I basically had every Covid symptom.”
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This was me on April 2nd after being sick for 2 weeks. I had never been this kind of sick. Everything hurt. Loss of smell. It felt like an elephant was sitting on my chest. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t keep food in me. I lost 9 pounds in 2 weeks. I was confused. Low grade fever. And the headaches were horrible. I basically had every Covid symptom. At the very end of march I took two covid19 tests and both were negative. I also took a covid antibody test (the finger prick test) after I was feeling a bit better. NEGATIVE. After living the last 4 months with lingering symptoms like, vertigo, stomach abnormalities, irregular periods, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, zero short term memory, and general malaise, I went and got an antibody test from a blood draw (not the finger prick) from a lab. I am POSITIVE for covid antibodies. I had Covid19. I just want you to be aware that our testing system is flawed and we don’t know the real numbers. I also want you to know, this illness is not a hoax. I thought I was dying. It felt like I was dying. I will be donating my plasma with hopes that I might save a life. Please take care of yourselves. Please wash your hands and wear a mask and social distance. I don’t want anyone to feel the way I felt. Be well. I love you all (well, maybe not the trolls. Just the kind people.)❤️
She also brought to attention that she never tested positive for COVID. In fact, she had two negative tests. She later took an antibody test that turned out to be positive.
“I just want you to be aware that our testing system is flawed and we don’t know the real numbers,” she wrote. “I also want you to know, this illness is not a hoax. I thought I was dying. It felt like I was dying.”