‘Silver bullet’ COVID-19 patient spends a week at Midland Memorial Hospital

Published: Jul. 30, 2020 at 9:11 AM CDT
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Local Doctor Richard Bartlett spoke to the Midland County Commissioner’s Court on Monday about his so-called ‘silver bullet’ to COVID-19 - budesonide, inhaled steroid.

But, CBS7 spoke to one patient who’s tried his treatment and says this is no silver bullet.

The patient, Rick Flores says that after just one week on budesonide, he ended up in the emergency room at Midland Memorial Hospital.

“You know I’d never experienced anything like this before. In my torso, in constant pain, it was just excruciating,” said Flores.

Rick Flores had begun feeling the effects of COVID-19 back on July 3rd, so he then turned to a treatment that has made the rounds on local, national, and even international media, budesonide.

“I hadn’t heard anything about it before, up until I posted and people were saying ‘Hey this guy’s got this treatment, that’s supposed to be a silver bullet. You should reach out to him’ and that exactly what I did,” Flores explained.

So, he reached out to Doctor Richard Bartlett who then referred him to where he could get the inhaled steroid treatment.

“I kinda just posted on Facebook asking for prayer and numerous people reached out to me sending me links to Dr. Bartlett and that’s how I got connected with him,” said Flores.

And after one week on what Dr. Bartlett calls the ‘silver bullet’ treatment, Flores said it was not enough.

“It wasn’t just efficient, I mean I just got to the point where I was getting worse and worse,” Flores explains.

That was when Flores knew he had to seek further help in fighting the coronavirus.

“You can’t breathe, and when you can’t breathe fear started to set in and that’s when I knew I needed to get to the hospital.”

He spent another week in the hospital, receiving convalescent plasma and the anti-viral drug Remdesivir.

“The next day I could tell a huge difference because I was starting to breathe better, I was starting to feel better,” Flores said.

We have also heard stories of success using Dr. Bartlett’s treatment, and while we all want budesonide to be a success or ‘silver bullet’, Flores isn’t convinced.

“You know, I think that maybe I was too advanced by the time I started taking that medicine. I felt some relief, but it wasn’t enough. I’m not saying it doesn’t work, it may work on some people. But for me, it wasn’t a silver bullet,” Flores clarified.

Even weeks after his initial diagnosis of the coronavirus, he is still feeling its effects.

CBS7 has reached out to Dr. Richard Bartlett to respond and clarify what happened in Flores’ case, but have yet to see a response.

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