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Concern grows over relaxing COVID-19 restrictions after research shows man caught virus twice

New research shows immunity from COVID-19 might not last as long as once thought after a 25-year-old man was first in U.S. to contract virus twice.

TAMPA, Fla. — New research shows immunity from COVID-19 might not last as long as once thought after a 25-year-old man was reported to be the first person in the U.S. to contract the virus twice.

"His disease was worse the second time. So this is very unusual and this is a little bit concerning," said Dr. Michael Teng of the University of South Florida.

According to The Lancet Infectious Diseases medical journal, the Nevada man contacted the virus in April and recovered -- only to contract it again in June.

The journal reports that the second infection brought on symptoms of fever, headache, dizziness, cough, nausea and diarrhea. 

Researchers said they could not tell how long any immunity lasted from the first infection if he indeed ever built an immunity to the virus the first time around. 

"We don't actually know...how long immunity lasts," Teng said. "We don't know whether there are a lot more cases of reinfection that we're not picking up because the symptoms are much less. 

"So it's certainly possible...we're not surprised that it happens. It's just very difficult at this moment to be able to detect all the background infections going on."

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