post covid psychosis

Morris Woman Believes ‘Post-COVID Psychosis' Led to Husband's Death

NBC Universal, Inc.

In few instances, people with no history of mental health challenges have developed severe psychotic symptoms after being diagnosed with COVID-19.

Jennifer Price, of suburban Morris, believes her husband, Ben, contracted what's been referred to as "post-COVID psychosis" before his death.

Ben Price, a beloved father of two and farmer, died by suicide just days after being treated and released from the hospital for COVID.

"This was another level of something that took over his brain," Jennifer Price explained.

Jennifer Price said her husband hadn't experienced mental health issues in the past, and as the days went on, she noticed a drastic change in his behavior.

"He was just really at a level of panic and paranoia and was scared," she said. "He just kept saying I'm just so scared, I'm just so scared, and he couldn't even tell you what he was scared about."

Jennifer Price thought her husband was suffering from brain fog. Doctors prescribed Ben Price anxiety medication, but his condition only got worse.

"There was nothing we could do to get him to relax and calm down," Jennifer Price said. "That was heartbreaking."

Dr. Danesh Alam, a psychiatrist with Northwestern Medicine, says "post-COVID psychosis" is rare, and as result of reported cases, researchers are looking to see how COVID affects the human brain.

"Labs suggest that the virus may actually be crossing the blood brain barrier, and some of the changes that we see in [the] brain related to major psychotic disorders are being observed," the doctor explained.

As more studies are being completed, Jennifer Price hopes that by sharing her husband's story, others' lives can be saved.

"We would have done something different had we known about this," she told NBC 5.

Doctors say if you notice a change in your loved one's behavior, even if they're hospitalized for COVID-19, reach out to a doctor immediately, so the symptoms can be caught and treated earlier.

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