The wife of former Springbok rugby player and TV presenter Toks van der Linde, Carol, has been readmitted to hospital.
The forty-three-year-old, who spent 10 days in Mediclinic Durbanville in February, is being treated for the same ailment: pericarditis or inflammation of the pericardium (heart sac).
“I started experiencing symptoms again about a week before – fatigue, heart palpitations, nausea, trembling and intense chest pain. After monitoring me for a few days, my cardiologist decided to admit me,” Carol tells YOU from her hospital bed.
She was readmitted on 18 March and says she’s feeling safe in hospital, despite it being a place most people want to avoid during the current Covid-19 pandemic.
“The precautions are of such a high standard any fears are laid to rest.”
With her heart condition it could be fatal for Carol to contract the coronavirus.
“That’s why I’m being kept in isolation, even in hospital,” she says.
Most of the wards have been closed to limit exposure. “All Covid-19 cases are treated in ICU. Mediclinic’s rules are very strict, for everyone’s sake.”
Of course she misses her ex-Springbok prop husband Tok, and her dog. “But little things too, like walking around the house or in the garden. Even just making a cup of coffee. With my condition I’m not even allowed to leave the ward – any activity puts too much strain on my heart.
“So this is much stricter isolation than at home,” she says.
Carol can’t receive visits from Toks at all. “But he’s lovely. He leaves books and biltong at reception for me and we video-call often,” she says.
“So many people with the most beautiful hearts are sending me messages, praying or just posting flowers on Facebook for me. I have faith again in people’s compassion for others.”
She’s deeply grateful that doctors picked up on her recent relapse so quickly. “I’m getting the same treatment [as the first time] but I’m recovering faster.”
Carol is due to be discharged on Thursday 23 April and hoping to spend the final days of lockdown in the company of Toks and her beloved furbaby.
“Even when I get to go home, I’ll be on strict bed rest,” she says.
*Covid-19 is keeping many of us indoors. Our shopping trips have become brief, normal activities have been halted – many have been wondering if they’ll still get their copy of their favourite YOU magazine – and how will we find things to do while indoors?
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