New Orleans Lawyer Only 45 In Critical Care With Coronavirus

‘It could happen to anybody’: Kenner lawyer, 45, in critical care with coronavirus, wife says

The Times Picayne reports….

Mark Frilot took medicines to treat what he thought for several days was a case of the flu, but he just couldn’t turn the corner.

His fever was spiking nightly. At one point, his wife, Heaven, found him on the edge of their tub talking to himself, delirious.

When he went to East Jefferson General Hospital on Thursday, the staff diagnosed him with double pneumonia and the new coronavirus. Since then the Kenner lawyer has been sedated and attached to a breathing machine as doctors help him fight the potentially deadly respiratory disease that has caused a worldwide pandemic.

Heaven Frilot said Sunday she could hardly believe it. Her husband is 45, a construction litigator who is “never, ever sick.” But now, after seeing images of huge groups partying in New Orleans on Saturday despite the state’s request for people to practice “social distancing,” she is speaking up, hoping her family’s experience can serve as a warning for those who underestimate the risks of COVID-19.

“It could happen to anybody,” Heaven Frilot said. “That’s all I’m trying to say.”

Mark Frilot first noticed his temperature was a little high March 6: about 99 degrees. Heaven Frilot jokingly called him “a wuss” when he mentioned it. It would be three more days before the state would announce Louisiana’s first case of COVID-19, which has inflicted its most severe damage on the elderly.

But when he stayed in bed all day March 7 and still hadn’t improved the next day, he went to an urgent care clinic. There, doctors diagnosed him with the flu and prescribed him Tamiflu, the steroid prednisone and codeine cough syrup.

Heaven Frilot said her husband immediately started taking the medications, but he got worse. When his nightly fevers wouldn’t break, though he was alternating Tylenol and Advil, he called the doctor back. He was told that sometimes happens while on Tamiflu and to continue his treatment.

Then came the bathtub episode.

When the Frilots checked Mark into the ER the next day, they were astounded when staffers informed him a flu test had come back negative. Heaven Frilot said she asked the hospital to get her husband’s paperwork faxed over from the urgent care clinic. When the documents arrived, they showed he had been found negative for the flu there as well, despite the treatment plan he was given.

“I was outraged,” said Heaven Frilot, who declined to identify the urgent care clinic. “How does it happen?”

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