Kenya and the global community continue to grieve over the loss of the esteemed sports broadcaster from Capital FM, Sean Cardovillis. His tragic demise has illuminated the health challenges he faced, including his battle against pneumonia and COVID-19.
According to both authorities and eyewitnesses, a cleaner who had come to attend to the vicinity outside his home discovered his lifeless body on the fourth floor of his residence.
What has come as a shock to many is the revelation that Sean had been silently contending with pneumonia.
In a comprehensive online post, Sean candidly shared the chronicles of his health struggles, particularly following his contraction of COVID-19. He provided insight into the nature of pneumonia, an infection that inflames the air sacs in one or both lungs, often resulting in the accumulation of fluid or pus, accompanied by symptoms like coughing, fever, chills, and breathing difficulties.
Under the title “My Struggle with Pneumonia and Valuable Insights by Sean Cardovillis,” the seasoned journalist recounted his journey:
“In the months of September and October last year, I initially believed I had caught the flu and began self-medicating with over-the-counter flu remedies. Subsequently, I started experiencing discomfort in my back and ribs, which I brushed off for about a week before clinching victory in the KCB Nanyuki Autocross championship and the Kenya National Rally Championship at the outset of October. A medical evaluation confirmed the presence of pneumonia and prescribed a course of antibiotics spanning three days. Although I experienced some improvement, I continued to endure sporadic coughing spells, which I didn’t pay much heed to.
Come the second week of December, I tested positive for COVID-19 and observed a five-day isolation period until I tested negative once more. Following this, I embarked on a three-week sojourn to Nanyuki during the Christmas and New Year festivities. Regrettably, I made the mistake of taking an additional Pfizer booster shot just before the New Year, which incapacitated me with fever for two days due to side effects. I later discovered that one should wait a minimum of 28 days between receiving a negative COVID test and receiving a booster shot.”
Sean went on to narrate how, after taking the COVID-19 booster, a series of health issues emerged, leading to a subsequent bout of pneumonia, often referred to as “Long COVID.”
“This marked the onset of a series of medical challenges that culminated in my second episode of pneumonia, a condition frequently referred to as ‘Long COVID’ by medical professionals. Over the past few weeks, I grappled with breathlessness, severely hindering my ability to walk and sleep. This compelled me to make a late-night visit to Nairobi Hospital last Friday. Astonishingly, the hospital conducted a blood test, which yielded no alarming results, and the physician attributed my distress to anxiety without conducting a thorough chest examination. My condition deteriorated rapidly over the weekend, prompting me to reach out to my father, who rushed from Nanyuki on Sunday morning.”
Sean and his family eventually decided to seek a second opinion.
“I subsequently sought medical care at Mediheal, where I underwent a chest X-ray and ECG. It was then revealed that I was grappling with severe pneumonia. Consequently, they prescribed antibiotics to combat the pneumonia. Unfortunately, these medications proved too potent for me, leading to the onset of diarrhea and anxiety attacks that robbed me of my ability to sleep at night. In desperation, I reached out to a close friend, whose husband happens to be a physician at Village Market. Thanks to Sue Nkirote Omanga – a heartfelt thank you – she swiftly identified the problem, adjusted my medication, and introduced a regimen of essential vitamins to help rebuild my strength. I am elated to report that my anxiety attacks have ceased, and so has the diarrhea. I have received advice to refrain from large gatherings for the next few weeks, as my immune system remains notably fragile.”
Owing to his deteriorating health, Sean was compelled to cancel or postpone several media consultancy contracts. He underscored the importance of not dismissing flu-like symptoms lightly and advocated for seeking a comprehensive medical assessment when flu is suspected. Additionally, he urged individuals to exercise caution when considering extra booster shots, emphasizing the necessity of adhering to the recommended waiting period.