COVID-19: 102-year-old Italian woman survives the virus


A 102-year-old Italian woman, Italica Grondona (picture), has survived the coronavirus disease or COVID-19 after spending more than 20 days in hospital.

Although the aged are said to be among those highly vulnerable to COVID-19, Grondona recovered from coronavirus in the northern Italian city of Genoa.

“We nicknamed her ‘Highlander’ – the immortal,” said Vera Sicbaldi, the doctor who treated Grondona. “Italica represents a hope for all the elderly facing this pandemic.”

However, Sicbaldi said the doctors did “very little” and that Grondona recovered on her own.

The average age of those who have tested positive for coronavirus and subsequently died in Italy is 78, according to the country’s National Health Institute.

Grondona was hospitalised at the beginning of March for “mild heart failure” when it was discovered she had mild coronavirus symptoms.

Doctors said her case impressed them so much that they decided to study it deeper.

“We got serological samples, she is the first patient we know that might have gone through the ‘Spanish flu’ since she was born in 1917,” Sicbaldi explained, referring to the 1918/1919 flu pandemic that killed at least 50 million people worldwide, according to the United States-based Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

Sicbaldi said Grondona left hospital on March 26 and was now in a care home.

Meanwhile, Grondona wouldn’t be the first centenarian to have overcome the coronavirus.


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