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Avatar universal

Partner and I symptomatic at nearly the same times

For the past three weeks my partner and I have been showing very similar symptoms including full-body aches, nausea, and chills. However, these symptoms tend to flare up for both us on the same days and - in one case - down to almost the same time.

Day 1: Three weeks ago my partner (who I live with) woke up with chills, full-body aching, and was having a hard time breathing - the latter of which lasted about 3 hours before improving. Concerned this was COVID and since she has a slightly compromised immune system, we went to the ER. She was ultimately cleared to go home and her tests came back negative. That same morning, I also woke up feeling terrible. I had full body aches and chills, as well as nausea, but had no breathing issues. Assuming it was something I ate and just coincidental timing with my partner's symptoms, I did not get tested for COVID. My partner had been showing some lighter symptoms w/out breathing issues a few days prior. I had shown no prior symptoms. Both my partner and I felt ill from around 6am until 2/3pm. The transition from feeling ill to feeling better was really quick. My partner went back to just mild symptoms and I was nearly 100% better. (We quarantined for 14 days out of an abundance of caution.)

Day 2: Six days after day 1, we woke up with the exact same symptoms we had individually experienced on day 1: partner had trouble breathing, I had nausea, and we both had full body aches and chills. These symptoms lasted maybe 5-6 hours this time. Again, once they were over, they were over. We were back to feeling normal by that evening.

Day 3: Just yesterday (just over 3 weeks since day 1 and about 2.5 weeks since day 2) we both started feeling ill again after a couple weeks of feeling fine. This time, our symptoms started at around 6:30pm and they lasted about 3 hours. The freaky part was that our symptoms flared up almost down to the minute and came on like a light switch. Within 20 minutes or so we both went from feeling fine to feeling chills, aches, nausea, and partner had tightness of chest again.

We are both mid-twenties, generally healthy, get consistent exercise, etc. Outside of partner's immune system (IgA deficiency) we have no other underlying conditions. Between our symptom flare ups, we have felt generally well. Is this COVID and the test just came back false negative, or something else? And why we are experiencing symptoms at nearly the same times?
1 Responses
Avatar universal
I assume you meant episodes 1, 2 and 3 not  days 1, 2, 3 since they are weeks apart.

There is no disease that makes 2 people's symptoms flare up in synch. Perhaps some of what one person feels is flaring up has been that way for a while but they don't notice it until the other person does. Anyway you both are sick with something that is not diagnosed.
Perhaps you two were food poisoned (that wouldn't create difficulty breathing though) a few times or got flu at the same time or some combination of different maladies occurred? Without a diagnosis and test you cannot know what you were suffering from.
It seems unlikely that Covid would hit you once a week 3 times and clear up within hours each time. Since only one person was tested and only once, you could consider getting looked at by a doctor and tested again if you feel ill then.

3 Comments
It is possible that you two did happen to get sick  at the same time 3 different times as you feel happened. That may not be likely to happen but with 330M people in the US it probably happens to some couples once in a while.
Thank you for clarifying - 3 'episodes' is what I intended to say.

I would also add that while I have been feeling completely fine between these episodes, my partner has maintained mild symptoms over these three weeks, with some days being better than others. The puzzling part is just that we both have really bad flare ups with similar symptoms at the same general times. For that reason, I find it unlikely to be food poisoning or something like that, unless we just got seriously unlucky three times in three weeks. And like you said, it still doesn't explain the shortness of breath for my partner.

I am aware there have been cases of covid where people experience episodes of heightened symptoms with periods of little-to-no symptoms between. We also have been exhibiting very similar symptoms to covid, so it just seems like a relatively likely scenario, even though her test came back negative.

If it's not viral, the only other thing I can think of is that it would be environmental. I just can't come up with any change in our environment over the past ~3 weeks that wasn't there before...
It's not food poisoning.  Wouldn't happen 3 times, and wouldn't last this long, and it would have been a lot more horrible the couple of days that lasts.  You'd both have been on the toilet all day.  I'm guessing you both have covid.  When you're in a pandemic and if you're in the US there are over 2 million cases of it, the most likely thing is the most likely thing.  The tests aren't very good, so it was probably either a false negative or it hadn't built up enough to register positive yet.  I'm no expert, but both of you should get tested again and if those I've seen interviewed who treat patients with it are right, get tested two or three times.  It sometimes takes that even in those with severe cases, which even if you have it you don't have.  But it would be nice to know, because if it is covid and it finally completely goes away for both of you, you can then possibly have immunity to it at least for awhile and be part of the studies going on to see if your antibodies develop, protect you, and possibly can help others as well.  Peace.
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