How one COVID-19 patient remained in isolation for a year

A coronavirus patient’s results have been positive in 78 successive tests, and he’s remained in isolation for over a year.

 A person's hands unlock a door, one hand on the doorknob (Illustrative) (photo credit: PIXABAY)
A person's hands unlock a door, one hand on the doorknob (Illustrative)
(photo credit: PIXABAY)

A Turkish man has been in isolation for over a year because of antigen tests that keep coming out positive. This is his story.

Since the end of 2020, Muzaffer Kayasan from Turkey has undergone 78 antigen tests and each one was positive. He’s spent 14 months in isolation at his home and in the hospital.

Kayasan, a 56-year-old leukemia patient who is now at home in Istanbul, has become accustomed to isolation but is tired of only seeing his children and grandchildren in video calls or through a window. He wants this to change, and to that end he has asked the government for help. 

He was first diagnosed with the virus on December 19, 2020, according to Anadolu Agency, a state-run Turkish news agency. His wife and son have stayed with him occasionally, and both tested negative. Kayasan now wants to get an exemption from Turkey's coronavirus laws, which ends self-isolation after a week - which was two weeks until last month - only if the patient is found negative.

But Kayasan, as mentioned, has never come out negative in tests since he first got sick and his doctors think he continues to come out positive because the leukemia left him with a weak immune system. "I have recovered, but I still have remnants of coronavirus in my body," Kayasan said. He added that that’s the only explanation given for the positive tests.

Elderly man (illustrative) (credit: PIXABAY)Elderly man (illustrative) (credit: PIXABAY)

It’s now 2022 and in a catch-22, since Kayasan is still considered sick, he can’t be vaccinated, as people with COVID-19 must wait until they recover completely from the virus to get vaccinated.