A unvaccinated Mississippi man is warning others after he contracted COVID-19 and ended up losing a leg -- an event that turned him from vaccine skeptic to vaccine believer, WVUE reports.
"I was unvaccinated," said Bryan Thompson, 43, who added that he was otherwise healthy. "I myself was a little skeptical and I felt it got rushed. I wanted to just make sure it was safe. We were in a low-risk situation. It wasn't like I was a front-line worker somewhere seeing hundreds of people a day. So I figured if anyone can take a little bit of a risk it could be us because of our situation."
"My blood pressure was 71/40, and my oxygen was in the very low 80s. I mean, I was on my way out," he said. "It probably wouldn't have been much longer and I would have died."
But after being discharged from the hospital, Thompson soon realized that his ordeal wasn't over.
"During the night, [the] pain increased to a level I have never experienced," he said. "[The] Worst pain I have ever felt in my life. My foot just... I can't explain it. Like, screaming-out kind of pain."
His wife Audrey rushed him to the hospital, where doctors found several blood clots in his leg.
"It eventually got to the point where there was just no hope to save anything," said Bryan, who pointed out that as a result, his leg had to be amputated just below the knee.
"If anyone can help at all, we would appreciate it. His medical bills will be astronomical, and I might have to take unpaid leave to help him. He is young and healthy and we never would have thought that this would affect our family this way... It's just been a nightmare situation and I urge anyone who has not been vaccinated to reconsider," his wife wrote on a GoFundMe page.
In a Facebook post, Thompson reiterated his newfound vaccine advocacy.
"My COVID bill is in and it is over 50k dollar. Luckily I have insurance and they will cover a great deal, but I still owe right around 20%... This amount does not included the amputation in which I actually expect higher amounts since I am still in the hospital and seeing specialists. Any amount helps. This will be a financial burden on my family, but God willing we will overcome."