Sir David Jason’s illness that lead to him to feel ‘so weak’

Sir David Jason says he had ‘seriously bad’ Covid

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Back in July, last year, the iconic Only Fools And Horses star endured a “seriously bad” battle with Covid. Gaining his strength by the autumn, Sir Jason recalled his traumatic experience with the deadly coronavirus. Getting up in the middle of the night to use the toilet, Sir John “collapsed” as his “muscles weren’t working”.

He told BBC Breakfast in October 2022: “All the muscles weren’t working. I collapsed and I fell against the radiator. I was so weak, I couldn’t get up.

“I crawled to the bed… I used the bed to try and stand up so that I could go to where I wanted to get, and also get back into bed, and I couldn’t.

“I tried for about a quarter of an hour, trying all sorts of things to stand up so I could walk about.”

Failing to lift himself off the ground, he resorted to crawling on the ground with his head.

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He explained: “You know when you see a walrus if you watch David Attenborough, and they walk on land, they crawl on land? That’s what I did.

“But in order to do that, I had to use my head. So now I’m lying face down on the ground, and in order to get to the door – and the arms really weren’t working and the legs weren’t working – I was using my head to drag me to the door.”

By the time he got to the door, his “good lady wife”, Gill Hinchcliffe, had opened the door and helped him out.

The next day, due to the fall, Sir Jason gained “carpet burns all down [his] forehead and across the top of [his] nose”.

Looking back at his interaction with Covid, Sir Jason said: “I got it seriously bad.”

Research published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health noted “older people diagnosed with a Covid infection are at higher risk of severe muscle weakness”.

The NHS Covid Recovery portal warned of myalgia during and following a Covid infection.

Myalgia described “muscle aches and pains” that can involve the ligaments, tendons, and soft tissues.

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The muscles and joints might ache, feel painful and stiff, which tends to be more noticeable in the shoulders, neck, back, hips and knees.

Myalgia can make it difficult to stand up, climb stairs, to grip objects with your hands, or to lift your arms above the head.

“Many joint and muscle problems get better quickly after Covid,” the national health service assures.

If, however, problems persist, it’s best to speak to your GP and to see a physiotherapist.

Covid symptoms can differ from person to person, but the main symptoms include:

  • A high temperature or shivering (chills) – a high temperature means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours
  • A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
  • Shortness of breath
  • Feeling tired or exhausted
  • An aching body
  • A headache
  • A sore throat
  • A blocked or runny nose
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhoea
  • Feeling sick or being sick.

People are no longer required to take a Covid test if they are presenting with symptoms.

If, however, you are struggling with your symptoms, you can call NHS 111.

David Jason: All The Best Bits and More showcases on Channel 5 on Saturday, February 4 at 10.20pm.

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