Local man recovering from COVID-19 facing lung transplant

Local man recovering from COVID-19 facing lung transplant

BOSTON — Carl Werden is making strides while slowly recovering from COVID-19.

“Woo hoo good job! You got it. You’re doing good,” cheered his nurses as he is getting back on his feet after nearly losing his battle with COVID. His fiancé, Margaret Williams, says the virus stopped Carl in his tracks.

“He was very active, he was always working. He didn’t smoke and he ate well,” she said.

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Margaret and Carl were supposed to be married in June but coronavirus put their wedding on hold.

“Yeah, as a matter of fact June 26 (the day) we were supposed to get married,” Williams said.

COVID-19 left Carl’s lungs severely damaged, said his daughter Delaney Werden.

“They found out his lungs were just too damaged and that it would have to be a lung transplant,” Werden said.

Carl’s case caught the eye of Dr. Nirmal Sharma at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

“In his case, he developed fibrosis as a direct result of the injury from the COVID,” Sharma said.

Dr. Sharma heads up the Lung Transplantation Center at the Brigham, and said in the New England region, “we are the largest lung transplant program.”

Sharma said Carl is making a remarkable recovery. On Friday, Werden overcame a major hurdle--he completed a 450-foot walk in six minutes with as much oxygen as he needs, a move that has qualified him for being added to the lung transplant list.

If and when the transplant happens, Carl would be the first COVID-related lung transplant recipient in New England.

Carl’s fiancé and daughter are optimistic.

“I have a lot of faith in him, we do, and he’s a lot stronger than he thinks he is,” Williams said.

Carl is hopeful, too, and grateful for everyone who is pulling for him. In a video his daughter sent Boston 25, he says, “Thank you for all your prayers and thinking of me.”

Once Carl gets the transplant, he should be up and walking immediately. However, he won’t be able to work as a contractor. His family has set up a GoFundMe page to help him get back on his feet financially as well.

If you’d like to help Carl, click here.

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