Social media influencer Gena Tew has revealed she recently left an eye exam for her AIDS-related blindness for fear of contracting COVID-19.
The 27-year-old model, who has more than 650,000 followers on TikTok, has documented her health issues in a series of social media posts since going public with her AIDS diagnosis in March.
In August, Tew revealed to her TikTok and Instagram followers that she had undergone eye surgery, after her illness caused significant vision loss.
Tew took to her TikTok account over the weekend to share that while she went to the doctor’s office for a checkup, another patient’s ‘cough and hack’ led to her his rapid departure.
“I know I said I’d be back with an eye update today, but actually I just had to leave my eye doctor,” she explained in a video filmed inside a vehicle. “Why, you ask me? Well, I don’t mind if I do.
“I was wearing my mask, but I’m sorry…if there’s anyone in there coughing and cutting their lungs all the time, I’m leaving. I had COVID last time. No! Unfortunately , I have to postpone my update.”
Over Labor Day weekend, Tew told her followers that she was still suffering from blindness, about three weeks after her eye surgery.
She said: “Those of you asking for an update on my eye, I went to the doctor the other day and he said I have to wait a month to progress.
“So they put a gas bubble in my eye. That’s what makes it completely blind, like completely. But I have to wait a month to see progress and it’s really scary. Really scary. But I just wanted to let you guys know.”
After her surgery, Tew said in August that she was “completely blind in her left eye, so I just had surgery to get the blood out of it.”
Tew added that she would “take this new prescription they’re giving me for my eyes. It should get better and progress because it’s still healing. It’s still really, really painful.”
On one of his posts, Tew had used the hashtag “#CMV”, in apparent reference to cytomegalovirus retinitis, which is known to be an eye complication in people living with AIDS.
Over the past few months, Tew has shared a slew of videos on her health journey, including visits to doctors and posts from home, where she revealed she had lost sight in one eye and his weight had dropped to 65 pounds.
Tew recently revealed that she weighs up to 95 pounds.
In a video clip, which was shared on June 11 and has been viewed more than 12 million times, the social media star was shown struggling to get out of bed as her weight plummeted and the Muscular atrophy weakened his legs.
As Tew remains unable to walk, she shared an update with her TikTok followers on Monday, briefly showing herself on her feet using a walker.
Thanks to advanced treatments, Tew has shown videos of herself gaining weight as she recovers from the worst of her health battle.
According to the Mayo Clinic, AIDS, or Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, “is a life-threatening, chronic disease caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). By damaging your immune system, HIV interferes with your body’s ability to to fight infection and disease.
“HIV is a sexually transmitted infection (STI). It can also be passed through contact with infected blood and illicit injection drug use or sharing needles. It can also be passed from mother to child. child during pregnancy, childbirth or breastfeeding. Without medication, it can take years for HIV to weaken your immune system to the point where you get AIDS.”
Although there is no cure for HIV/AIDS, medication can control the infection and significantly slow its progression.