Credit: Instagram @hayleywoojiayi

Ever since she was a teenager, local actress Hayley Woo has been experiencing blackouts that lasted a few seconds each time. When she sits up from her bed, she would also have to do it slowly or she’d be giddy.

She thought other girls also experienced the same thing, the 30-year-old told AsiaOne in an interview on Jan 21.

Even though the blackouts occurred once or twice a month over a long period of about 13 years, Hayley believed she was healthy and ignored all the warning signs.

That is, until she went for her Covid-19 booster jab on Jan 17 and experienced chest tightness, difficulty in breathing and blurry vision a couple days later.

She also blacked out for around five minutes. Thankfully, she was with her family who promptly called for an ambulance.

(Read also “Here’s Why Your Arm May Be Sore After Getting The Covid-19 Vaccine“)

At the hospital, she was given two bags of saline and the doctor informed her she has low blood pressure, malnutrition, dehydration, and low red blood cells. Standing at 169cm and weighing 45.8kg, Hayley was also told she is underweight and lacks iron and calcium.

She clarified that despite how it looked in a photo that she uploaded to her Instagram Story on Wednesday, she didn’t have a blood transfusion.

Both Hayley and her twin sister Jayley received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for their first two doses and opted for Moderna for their booster shot.

Jayley had only a fever for a day or two and Hayley believes the side effects she had were because of her weak constitution. She said she doesn’t eat much due to a small appetite, doesn’t drink a lot of water, hardly exercises and sleeps at 3am to 4am for around six hours each night.

“I think in the long run, it puts a lot of stress on my body and I think finally my body just couldn’t take it anymore. I think it (this health incident) really is a silver lining to warn me to eat healthily and exercise, and that I cannot keep up this lifestyle,” said Hayley, who’s feeling much better already.

Despite her experience, she feels it’s important for people to take their booster jabs and also go for annual health checks.

“I shared [about my experience] because I want to tell the public to do a health check-up and not wait until something happens because then it might be too late,” she added.

“I don’t blame the booster jab at all. Now with Covid-19, everyone needs to be vaccinated and protect ourselves against it. It was just that my body is weak and I never took care of my health.”

This article was first published in AsiaOne.