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Mononucleosis, also known as "Mono," is an illness caused by an
infection with a virus. The virus, The Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) is usually the
cause of Mono. Other infectious viruses, like cytomegalovirus (CMV) can also
produce illnesses like Mono.
Most of the people who get Mono are adolescents and young adults. In
developed nations, the majority of the people has been exposed to the Epstein-
Barr virus by the age of 18. That means that many adults have had infections as
children caused by the Mono virus (which were asymptomatic or mild). Once
you get Mono, or the Epstein-Barr virus you are immune to re-infection.
Some of the symptoms of Mono are a painful sore throat with tonsillar
enlargement. Mono typically causes fever, headache, fatigue, and swollen
glands in the neck. Sometimes, people with Mono experience loss of appetite,
nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or a measle-like rash. The rash is seen in more than
80% of patients who are infected with Mono, and are prescribed an antibiotic.
Mono is diagnosed based on a patients symptoms and a physical exam.
Since the symptoms of Mono are so similar to those of other illnesses, it is not
easy to diagnose Mono at an early stage. Diagnoses are confirmed by blood
There is no "cure" for Mono. It takes a long time for to overcome Mono.
Eventually your immune system will help you recuperate. When you have the
symptoms of Mono, you can take aspirin or ibuprofen to help relieve the throat
pain and fever. Getting rest and drinking at least two quarts of fluid a day are
One customary complication of Mono is dehydration. This may develop
due to an inadequate amount of fluid intake. Some infrequent complications are
blood disorders, neurological and psychological problems. However, once you
get Mono, there is a very, very slim chance that you will get Mono again.
One way of getting this disease are by kissing a person who carries the
virus in the saliva. Other ways have not yet been proven. The virus
accountable for Mono is contagious and is found in moist exhaled air, nasal and
oral-secretions. However, there is no known prevention for Mono and isolation
is not indicated. Children are incubated for about 4-14 days, and for adults 4-6
weeks. The initial symptoms of Mono clear up in about 7-10 days. Lymph node
swelling and fatigue usually last 2-4 weeks. Some patients might take longer to
recover. Some people might not even know they have Mono and are able to go
on with their usual activities.
Exhaustion may be a great factor in the recovery period. The length of
time one remains tired from Mono varies considerably. A lot of people have
barely any fatigue at any time. However, a few people will be tired for many
months. Also, if you are very tired, a change of scenery might do you good. My
cousin had Mono, and she went down to Florida to visit our grandparents for a
few weeks. The warmer climate and change of scenery helped with her
One man who e-mailed me about Mono said that he couldn't even type on
his computer let alone go along with his usual daily activities.
Even though there is no medicine to cure Mono. Some of the best ways
to minimize the disease are;
1. Get at least 10-12 hours of sleep a day.
2. Avoid contact sports
3. Avoid alcohol
4. Avoid social activities; limit activities to sleeping, eating, and, if
5. Remain at home if fever develops.
6. Eat a well balanced diet.
There are some complications in Mono. An enlarged spleen is frequently
found and might cause upper abdominal pain. Contact sports are discontinued
because a blow to the spleen might cause it to rupture.
Mono is contagious (through kissing and saliva), but it isn't highly
contagious. 60 to 80 percent of college students have had mono in there
childhood, but weren't specifically diagnosed, however they are immune to the
One of the main reasons Mono makes you weak is because it infects your
white blood cells, anytime a disease infects you your body must mount an
immune response so much energy is required and diverted from normal daily
requirements so you feel weaker. Since this is such a strong disease with so
many little illnesses (strep throat, cough, cold, flu) it has to fight off the little
illnesses as well as Mononucleosis and the Epstein-Barr virus which causes
Mono. Since your body has to fight all of these diseases, it takes up so much
energy for your immune system to fight them off.
I've talked about all
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