Dr. Drew Pinsky Details His Battle with COVID-19, Months After Downplaying the Seriousness of the Virus

“I figured if I could handle dealing with the Teen Moms for a decade, I could handle anything. I was wrong. COVID’s even worse than Jenelle!” 

After making light of COVID-19 — and later apologizing for his commentsDr. Drew Pinsky has tested positive for the virus, and is giving his followers a detailed account of his battle with the Coronavirus. 

“Cheers to the New Year with some Hydralyte for Covid-19,” an Instagram post from earlier this week reads. “Drew tested positive day 4 and [his wife Susan] is negative. #2020 #covid19 #youlive. Drew is home, under surveillance and fever is down. Thanks Dr. Zelenko, Dr. Yo and Dr. Jeff for the superior care and advice. Drew is feeling better and will hopefully get well soon.”

In Instagram stream posts this week, Drew listed some of the symptoms he’s suffered. He stated he’s had back pain, mental fogginess, flu symptoms, inflammation, three days of a 102-degree fever and more. He’s received several infusions and medical treatments to help him battle the virus and its symptoms.

Drew—an internist and addiction medicine specialist who hosts the Teen Mom reunion specials— has been sharing recovery updates and answering followers’ questions on Instagram since his diagnosis was announced. Responses to his posts and live videos have included criticism for earlier comments he made comparing COVID-19 to the flu and for recent posts showing Drew traveling and attending gatherings with people outside of his household.

“Drew, not trying to be an ass, but you spent so much time out and about,” reads one response on Instagram. “Traveling, partying it out at resorts, and acting like everything was fine. Sorry you caught it, but you brought that on yourself.”

“I hope you recover fast man, you seem like a decent guy and I like you, but you have been downplaying this thing since the very beginning, going out to eat, telling people not to worry,” another person wrote. “Reaping a little of what you were [sowing].”

In February and March, as COVID-19 cases were first appearing across the United States and various restrictions were put in place to minimize the spread, Drew regularly downplayed the severity of the virus and criticized what he saw as a media overreaction to the virus on his own shows as well as appearances on news programs.

The Twitter account @DroopsDr created a video that’s gotten 4.5 million views featuring statements Dr. Drew made in February and March like, “It’s going to be just like the flu, it’s going to be almost identical,” and telling his fans that they would be more likely to die from being “hit by an asteroid” than from the virus.

Drew responded to the controversy and issued an apology in an April 4 live Periscope video.

“My early comments about equating coronavirus with influenza were wrong, they were incorrect, that was part of a chorus that was saying that, and we were wrong, and I want to apologize for that,” he said. “I wish I had gotten it right, but I got it wrong.”

In that video, Drew said he signed up in California and New York to serve on the front lines of the pandemic. It’s unclear if he has been asked to serve.

Even with the diagnosis, it doesn’t look like Drew and his family are going to be staying at home or avoiding gatherings in the future.

“We didn’t shelter in place, don’t intend to after this quarantine,” Drew’s wife Susan posted from his account on Instagram.

Comedian Rob DaRocha ripped Dr. Drew via an Instagram comment left on Thursday writing, “I think you really screwed up downplaying this entire situation from the beginning. I’ve listened to you on [Adam] Carolla[‘s show] and every time you act as if it’s no big deal. You were a guest recently and you were talking about dining out. Now you’ve had it and your tune has changed.

“The medicine you received isn’t accessible to everyone…why can’t you admit you were wrong…”

In an Instagram comment posted on Thursday, Drew responded that he believes he got COVID-19 while “at the hospital, or at work.”

In a later comment, he wrote that he “caught it at the hospital when I went to get the vaccine and was denied on last week due to paperwork.”

Drew told ABC7 News reporter Elex Michaelson on Tuesday that he “could feel COVID closing in around me” and he was trying to get the vaccine. However, on Christmas Eve, Drew said he woke up in the middle of the night with a fever and chills. He said the flu-like symptoms were “nasty.”

“But it’s really what follows that’s the treacherous part,” Drew said during the interview. “I want you to think about this as the flu, with treachery. And that’s how people get into trouble with this thing…”

He stated that he was affected neurologically, as well as in his lungs and heart.

“Had I not had careful management by a physician and I was not aware of what was going on, I could see how people could get behind this and you could really get yourself into big trouble.”

Watch Dr. Drew’s interview with ABC7 below.

RELATED STORY: Duggar Family Slammed for Throwing “Super Spreader” Holiday Party Despite COVID Cases Rising: Fans Call Them “Completely Reckless & Thoughtless!”

(Photos: MTV; Instagram; Twitter)



  1. funny, everyone who gets Covid has completely different symptoms, and then they tell you “this is what the real Covid is like.”
    is there any proof of where Dr. Drew caught Covid? or that his illness is due to Covid?
    society is convinced that everything is Covid, and that guessing is contact tracing. “I must have gotten it here…”

  2. And to think the only symptoms I got when I had covid was a headache and I lost my taste and smell. Guess I got lucky.

  3. Ages before COVID I listened to him rant multiple times on his podcast about LA’s homeless population issue. How the various tent cities were going to be the cause of the next pandemic if something wasn’t done. I was utterly baffled by his complete disregard of COVID. Apparently Corona wasn’t “pandemicy enough” for him. Who knows? It was so weird. And does he even actively practice medicine anymore? I thought he was just on TV or podcasting. So why should he get a vaccine first? How delusional is he that he thought he ought to get his before someone else who is an actual first responder? I wouldn’t trust that man to put on a bandaid let alone take ANY medical advice from him now.

  4. Id rate his intelligence with COVID and social distancing right up there with his handling of the Teen Moms on the reunions.

  5. “We didn’t shelter in place, don’t intend to after this quarantine,” Drew’s wife Susan posted from his account on Instagram

    Uhm???? Why are they both so stupid.

  6. WTF is wrong with his wife saying that?!
    Such an insult to all the people who died from Covid and those who have it very severely now.
    Are they that tone-deaf that they don’t realize that 1) not everyone is as lucky to have had a mild case and 2) not everyone has access to the top of the line health care that they have?

  7. His ignorance and stupidity are astronomical! While that qualifies him to expertly host the train wrecks on the Teen Mom franchises (and lets be honest, he isn’t great at that) it does not qualify him to give Covid-19 advice! I have zero respect for him and his stupid, thoughtless “We didn’t shelter in place, don’t intend to after this quarantine” dumbass wife either.

  8. This is honestly infuriating. To blame catching it on his visit to the hospital when he was denied a vaccine (that let’s be real, he doesn’t deserve, these are are in small number right now and should be given to those who are actually on the front lines fighting this virus or essential workers) and not his high risk behavior? Have several seats.

    And…”We didn’t shelter in place, don’t intend to after this quarantine,” Drew’s wife Susan posted from his account on Instagram….you truly can’t fix stupid.

    1. Everyone can get them in my city. No questions asked. We just had to wait in line a couple hours. I’m a stay at home mom, but they didn’t even ask what our jobs were or if we had underlying conditions. If you were in line, you got a vaccine.

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