For of us that know someone who’s taken Paxlovid, a most neatly-liked prescription medications for COVID-19, you’ve potentially heard talk of an awful side manufacture: the Paxlovid aftertaste. But “awful” is a right understatement. And, no doubt, so is “aftertaste,” because it’s now no longer appropriate a corrupt flavor that lingers in your tongue for a jiffy after swallowing a capsule—it’s a disgusting, invisible monster that occupies your complete mouth for 5 straight days.
Paxlovid is an antiviral medications in the develop of a 5-day capsule pack, and even supposing it comes with the heart-broken mouth monster, I’m quiet strongly genuine. In December, Paxlovid change into approved for emergency command by the FDA for tender to practical cases of COVID, and it’s just as of late change into extra widely on hand. Whereas it received’t medications COVID, it goes to manufacture signs less severe, and in scientific reviews it drastically reduced hospitalization rates.
As an alternative of the possibility of what the CDC calls “COVID-19 Rebound” (signs reappearing after winding up the Paxlovid direction), the most identical outdated side outcomes consist of an altered sense of taste, digestive complications, hypertension, and muscle aches. These are all preferable to lots of the COVID apprehension tales I’d heard and browse, so when I finally tested obvious a couple of days after my unvaccinated toddler picked up the virus from daycare, I texted my husband an image of my obvious take a look at with an spectacular sequence of expletives. Then I called my physician to ask Paxlovid.
The COVID signs started to hit me laborious lawful around the time my mother-in-law dropped my prescription on my entrance porch, so I right this moment popped the first three-capsule dose. It absolutely wasn’t upright—such as an uncoated aspirin nonetheless extra bitter—and washing it down with a lemon LaCroix most effective intensified the bitterness. I didn’t state well-known of it, even supposing, figuring the flavour would depart quick. As an quite a variety of it morphed into one thing worse. So well-known worse. Others contain described it as “steel grapefruit” and I guess that’s magnificent whenever you happen to also throw in notes of “dry canines food” and “over-stuffed dumpster on a sizzling summer season day.”
I chugged water to study out and wash away no topic change into happening in my mouth and went regarding the industrial of making an try to remain upright till I would possibly presumably attach my kids to mattress and absorb semi-permanent save of living on the couch. However the horrendous taste remained, it is now no longer connected what I ate or how well-known water I drank or how most regularly I brushed my teeth or even aged my favourite magic mouthwash. In some unspecified time in the future, I stumbled into the kitchen to take my 2d Paxlovid dose of the day (which change into appropriate as detestable because the first) and went to mattress. I fell asleep lawful away, nonetheless the taste change into so grisly that it woke me up in the center of the night. Twice.
By the next morning, the fever and chills had passed and my short-lived cough change into gone, too. As a result of in fashion medications, after one night’s sleep I had gone from feeling indulge in death to feeling indulge in I had a corrupt cool. But notes of death remained in my mouth. Sure, I change into fatigued and had a monotonous headache, tender muscle danger, and a continuously runny nose, nonetheless I now no longer regularly seen any of that because my senses had been fully overwhelmed by the rotten, bitter taste of Paxlovid. And I quiet had four extra days to switch. It change into so unbearable that I—a one who lives to bask in and writes about food and cooking—began to resolve on for the vary of COVID that would possibly presumably manufacture me lose my sense of taste and smell.