Patient Comments: Infectious Mononucleosis (Mono) - Symptoms

For infectious mononucleosis (mono), what were the symptoms and signs you experienced?

Comment from: Jackie, 19-24 Female (Caregiver) Published: October 01

My daughter has been sick on and off for at least 6 weeks, maybe more. She went to an ENT who noticed no symptoms and sent her away with an allergy regime consisting of Claritin and nasal spray. The very next day her tonsils swelled up and she went to the urgent care where she was quickly dismissed with tonsillitis. She's away at college so I hadn't noticed how bad off she was until she came home for a weekend and she was so weak she barely moved from her bed for the 3 days she was here. She went back and continued to get worse. Exhausted, fatigued, and sensitive to sun, heat, and light. She broke a fever frequently crossing the parking lot to her classes. I finally looked for an internal medicine doctor who proceeded to run a large blood panel that returned negative until I insisted on a strep, mononucleosis, and Epstein-Barr virus test. Finally, bingo she has mono. She at times has been so sick I wanted to call an ambulance. The headaches have been excruciating for her luckily keeping to evenings so she hasn't had to bear that all day. More concerning has been the strange pains through the neck, head and pain that has traveled through her shoulders and hands. She was given an antiviral and 5 days of steroids which seem to have boosted her energy just enough to get through the day. I hope she doesn't have a 6 month or 1 year recovery like some doctors report.

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Comment from: Becky, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: April 13

I contracted mononucleosis two years ago. I was in the hospital for 11 days. I had very high levels of bilirubin but the weird thing was I had severe pain. It started in my head, went to the middle of my back then to my lower back and hips and weirdly enough ended in my right elbow. I was on a cocktail of painkillers that did not touch the pain. I have lasting damage in my hands and arms and experience severe leg cramping and hand seizures now. No doctors around here seem to know or care what it was or what can be done. It's disappointing to say the least. Two years! My energy is not what it was and my hands and arms are very weak.

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Comment from: student1234, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: December 22

I was diagnosed with mononucleosis 8 weeks ago and I stopped feeling bad about 5 weeks ago. When diagnosed I had several lymph nodes swollen in and around my neck. While the ones underneath my jaw and above shoulder have definitely gone down, I still have four on the neck that haven't. I have two on each side of my neck. One of them is bigger than the rest, it is like hot dog in shape and is maybe 1.5 cm, the other ones are very skinny and maybe 1 cm, the bigger one though is bit wider than the others. I don't have any symptoms of weight loss, loss of appetite, tiredness, stomach pain, throat pain, night sweats, unusual bleeding, etc.

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Comment from: V M, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: December 15

I was 57 when I had mononucleosis. I was very tired and had a sore throat. I was so fatigued, my hands and legs shook and I was sick for about 2 months. I could barely sign my name at work.

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Comment from: farm girl, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: August 11

I am 69 years old, and had mononucleosis (mono) in high school. I was on bed rest for weeks. I don't remember what symptoms, I had just the long bed rest (no bedroom TVs or laptops then). I just got a call from the doctor that I have it again. Four days ago I hurt all over, all my joints and even my skin hurt to touch. All I wanted to do was sleep. First day skin felt hot, but I didn't have a thermometer. That happened on and off. Walking across a room I broke out in a cold sweat, like someone sucked all the juice out of me. I had no appetite night sweats. I wondered if it was hot flashes again at my age! On the 3rd day I called my doctor and asked for a tick panel. She ordered a ton of tests, including mono since it was on my health profile. Iron is also low. No lifting or heavy exercise for 6 weeks. Only positive these last few days is 5 lb. lost. Really think I have had outbreaks off and on over the years but this is the worst and longest the pain and fatigue has lasted. We are both 69 and extremely active, have a farm, horses, bird dogs, beef cattle, heat with wood, hike etc. (60 is the new 40). I knew something was wrong. Hope I don't get the gland throat things this time.

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Infectious Mononucleosis (Mono) - Treatments Question: What was the treatment for your mononucleosis?
Infectious Mononucleosis (Mono) - Causes Question: Most cases of mononucleosis occur in the 15-24 age group. How did you or your child "catch" mono?
Infectious Mononucleosis (Mono) - Children Question: Did your child have mononucleosis? Please share your family's experience.

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