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Opinions please - MIL care home tested positive but asymptomatic

(28 Posts)
OldQueen1969 Mon 01-Jun-20 17:34:47

Well 2020 is definitely the year that just keeps on giving......

I lost my Mum to cancer just over a month ago and we are muddling through sorting her affairs reasonably well - obviously am pretty devastated but trying to fuction.

My MIL who I cared for for 18 months before her dementia got too bad for us to handle safely is in a care home now. Today my DP had the call that she (74) has tested positive for the virus along with 3 or 4 others - but currently they are asymptomatic.

Obviously no-one knows when or how she became infected - lockdown has been strictly observed and some staff even lived in to minimise risk and we are very much of the opinion that it is what it is - so what I'm really looking for is anyone with knowledge or experience of this kind of scenario and thoughts on the likelihood of her becoming actually ill with it....... which is probably not possible, but we're the types who like as much info as possible in order to manage our thoughts and anxieties etc.

I can't allow myself to dwell on the problems and effects of her having to be isolated etc because I might just lose my shit as I've seen enough suffering since Christmas to last me a lifetime, and my DP is trying to remain stoic......

So hit me with science and risk assessments etc if you can - I know many people on this board have lots of insight and experience and I would be very grateful.

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Aquamarine1029 Mon 01-Jun-20 17:41:23

I'm very sorry about your mum and MIL, but no one, not even doctors, can give you the answers you're looking for. There is no way to predict how this virus will affect her, so all you can do is take it day by day. Since she is positive, she will definitely have to be isolated until she is free from the virus.

OldQueen1969 Mon 01-Jun-20 17:46:57

Thanks for your reply and kind words - and I do know you're right......

I shall indeed take things day by day - if I cross any more bodily parts I can take up a career in contortionism though.....

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Aquamarine1029 Mon 01-Jun-20 17:47:08

Forgot to add, my 93 to great aunt, who lives in a care home, got covid and she only became mildly ill even with underlying health conditions. In all honesty, the whole family thought she was not going to survive it when she first got the diagnosis, but she did. There's just no way to predict the outcome.

OldQueen1969 Mon 01-Jun-20 17:48:42

That's good news - thank you for sharing - and am so glad for you and your family x

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Murinae Mon 01-Jun-20 17:51:08

My 91 year old mother in law was the opposite developed mild symptoms on Saturday and died Thursday morning. Sadly I don’t think anyone can tell you how it’s going to go.

Aquamarine1029 Mon 01-Jun-20 17:55:00


I'm so sorry about your MIL.

OldQueen1969 Mon 01-Jun-20 19:26:22

@Murinae - so very sorry to hear this flowers

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Cutangle Mon 01-Jun-20 19:34:28

My mum works as a nurse in a nursing home. She’s nearly 65, three undying health conditions. She’s just gone back to work after two weeks off with Covid-19. She was poorly but not horrific. My stepdad who is 70 never caught it at all despite him using her toothbrush for a week as he thought it was his! They’ve had both staff and patients with covid in the home, both asymptomatic and with symptoms. No deaths. I really hope your MIL is ok. Not one member of staff or patient who was asymptomatic at test went on to develop symptoms xx

Mulhollandmagoo Mon 01-Jun-20 20:10:53


We had this with my gran a couple of weeks ago, she is in the latter stages of dementia and tested positive by was asymptomatic. Shes also had problems with her chest/heart for as long as I can remember, we were told to expect the worst. She went on to develop no symptoms at all other than some fatigue and spent a good few days solid asleep, she tested negative last week 👍 in my completely uneducated opinion I'd say if she doesn't have symptoms then she's unlikely to develop them. When was she tested?

We had the same concerns as you as being locked in/confined to a small space is a massive trigger for her and she can get quite distressed but she managed it quite well, her care home had some amazing procedures in place

lljkk Mon 01-Jun-20 21:36:58

The first huge care home outbreak was Washington State. I thought I read something like 20% of the home residents who tested + stayed asymptomatic or close enough to it. People are saying same about cruise ship outbreaks.

I dunno if that is a pile of bad quality terrible information bad testing (false?), but I think I would definitely agree about one day at a time.

Imicola Mon 01-Jun-20 21:41:50

We were in the same situation a while back, and she never developed symptoms. Obviously can't say what will happen for your MIL, but it's not necessarily going to be bad.

MrsP2015 Mon 01-Jun-20 22:33:22

Wanted to reply as you sound so lovely star

I'm no expert but from what I've read/ heard I doubt she'd get that bad if she's got the virus in her without showing symptoms. But this Covid has been awful so I'd just go day by day as someone else suggested.

Really hope she stays well. I'm sure she's ok isolated and being waited on hand and foot!

OldQueen1969 Mon 01-Jun-20 22:36:52

Many thanks for all the reassuring replies - I guess we're a bit strung out with everything that's been going on since before lockdown and I had a bit of a wobble - I am very grateful for the voices of reason.

Physically, apart from frailty, MIL is healthy with no underlying conditions bar the Alzheimers - the home is fab and we are keeping regular contact with them via phone, so I guess time will tell.

Many thanks all and very best wishes x

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makingmiracles Mon 01-Jun-20 22:40:14

A relative of ours got taken in to hospital and diagnosed with bowel cancer 3wks ago, neg on arrival and tested after a week and was positive, tested again a few days ago, still pos. she’s been tired and dizzy and had a slight cough for 24hrs but nothing else, they’re even talking of sending her home this week, think they tested her again today. but it is slightly worrying they are going to send her home so quickly as her dh himself has leukaemia. Thankfully they have spare bedrooms so can isolate within their home.

OldQueen1969 Mon 01-Jun-20 22:40:16

@MrsP2015 - oh bless you for your lovely words - saw your post just after I posted and am very touched x

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OldQueen1969 Mon 01-Jun-20 22:42:20

@makingmiracles - just wanted to send you flowers and best wishes in such worrying circumstances x

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MereDintofPandiculation Mon 01-Jun-20 22:49:57

My father has just finished day 11 of no symptoms after testing positive.

starrynight19 Mon 01-Jun-20 22:55:00

Oh I hope she is going to be ok. Both ladies I know in care homes who have contracted it have been fine only showing minor symptoms.
Let’s hope she is the same.

OldQueen1969 Mon 01-Jun-20 23:02:44

It's most bizarre - believe me I'm fully aware of the potential seriousness of covid for some and have followed the rules including shielding when caring for my Mum at home - but the line we have been peddled that elderly care home residents are under a death sentence if they contract the virus which has gripped us may need further clarification IMHO.

Perhaps a breakdown of residents testing positive into mild cases and completely asymptomatic would be useful.

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Weedsnseeds1 Mon 01-Jun-20 23:16:00

Based on the age group, the percentage of infected likely to die is higher. However, as we get further into this, the data seems to suggest that, of those elderly people that have died, the majority of them had an average of three comorbidities, anyone of which could have easily been stayed on the death certificate, if you take COVID19 out of the equation.
If your MIL is old with dementia, but otherwise well (seems a contradiction in terms, but hopefully makes sense), her chances are pretty good, as the anecdotal evidence here is showing.

Weedsnseeds1 Mon 01-Jun-20 23:17:06

Any one, and stated. I should learn to proof read before posting!

SophieB100 Tue 02-Jun-20 09:01:55

OP, sorry about your mum.

I think that your MIL has tested positive without showing symptoms yet is a sign for cautious optimism. Last week they made it clear at the briefing, that often tests done early do not detect a positive, and they prefer to wait for symptoms (this was about the test and trace). Hancock said this, but crucially, the medical person went on to explain it, and I listen to the scientists/medics more than I do the minister!
So, with that in mind, I think a positive result, in an older person who is asymptomatic, is encouraging. She may well develop some symptoms, or, worse case, severe symptoms. But, for now, she's ok, and her immune system seems to be good. So all you can do is wait and see. Also, yes, she's now isolated, but if she continues to be ok, then in a week or so, you will know she's had it, and that will be a relief to you all.

Fingers crossed for you all. flowers

Taddda Tue 02-Jun-20 09:12:41

Currently waiting on MILs test results here (76, sent on Sunday)- she was ill with a fever/cough for two days but seems to be alot better now- ?

Is it possible to have symptoms like this for just a couple days if positive? Or likely to come back?

Floatyboat Tue 02-Jun-20 09:18:11

I think it's hard to put numbers on it. They have only recently done enough testing to detect asymptomatic patients. I think there is a good chance she will remain asymptomatic. The diamond Princess would suggest that. Whether having dementia significantly increases her risk of becoming symptomatic I don't know (I guess not).

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