Wrexham father in intensive care after refusing Covid vaccine

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Artur Brylowski is in intensive care after getting Covid having refused a vaccine

A father left in intensive care by Covid after refusing a vaccine has admitted: "I thought I'd never see my family again."

Gym-goer Artur Brylowski was fit and healthy until the end of July, when he was rushed into Wrexham Maelor Hospital with breathing problems.

The 42-year-old tested positive for coronavirus on arrival and was transferred to critical care.

His wife dialled 999 after he became sick and started struggling to breathe.

"I began feeling quite unwell at home, around a week before I came into hospital," said the father-of-two from Wrexham.

"I took some paracetamol and ibuprofen but neither made any difference and I was feeling sicker and sicker.

"My wife was extremely worried about me as I was struggling to breathe so she called for an ambulance.

"I don't really remember much after that."

Image source, FAMILY PHOTO
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The gym regular said he did not think Covid would make him ill

As he lay in hospital his condition worsened.

Consultant Dr Andy Campbell told him he might have to be put on a ventilator.

Mr Brylowski said he was "terrified".

He said: "I never expected to be this sick, I've had flu before but this was different. I couldn't breathe, it was frightening.

"The doctor told me my condition was deteriorating and there was a possibility I would be placed on a ventilator as I was struggling so much with my breathing.

"This terrified me - I thought I'd never see my family again."

Mr Brylowski turned down a Covid jab when it was offered to over-40s in April.

He believed the virus would only severely affect older people.

"It's hard to say why I never took up the vaccine, it wasn't that I was against it," he said.

"I just felt it was rushed out quickly and may not be safe.

"There was also a lot of things on social media that put me off, people saying different things, some saying get the vaccine and others saying don't."

Image source, Betsi Cadwaladr UHB
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The 42-year-old was "terrified" when told he may have to go on a ventilator

He said he was in good health and he thought he would be fine.

"During the last year you mainly heard that it was the older generation that got very sick - I never thought this would happen to me," he said.

Dr Campbell said he has seen an increase in younger people being admitted to hospital with Covid.

He said it was a difficult telling Mr Brylowski he might need to be put on a ventilator, knowing "the high mortality rate in ventilated Covid patients".

"Unfortunately, Artur chose not to get vaccinated, and what has happened to him really does show the ramifications of not being vaccinated, and the impact that can have on someone so young and fit."

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Mr Brylowski has been in hospital for about two weeks and plans to get vaccinated when he recovers

Mr Brylowski has been in hospital for about two weeks, and said he would getting vaccinated when he recovered.

"This experience has shown me how dangerous this virus can be for people of any age," he said.

"There will always be people out there that don't want the vaccine, but I think the benefits of getting it outweighs any small risk there may be.

"I hope by sharing my story it will make people who haven't had the vaccine think differently, I certainly regret not having mine."