Thursday, April 13, 2017

long lasting affect of mononucleosis virus

Athletes crushed by mono?

Hello. I'm 25 and suffer from chronic EBV. I've just joined this forum.

Are there any other athletes out there that have suffered through a prolonged case of mono and managed to recover fully?

Heres my story in brief:

I used to be an athlete. I would run 6-10 miles per day, compete in half-marathons, and participate in extreme exercise programs like P90X. I had a six-pack and did sets of 12 pull-ups and 50 push-ups. As a small female, I took pride in being able to lift heavy objects and compete with the boys.

I remember getting a very sore throat that lasted a week in May of 2010. A doctor gave me amoxicillin (A BIG NO-NO for mono!) and told me to wait and see if it would go away. Then, over about eight weeks of time, I became increasingly tired and struggled with my workouts and daily tasks. I also developed a steadily worsening headache that did not let up for over a month. I had never previously been sick for more than 24 hours since I was about ten and thus did not know how to take it easy. Finally, I crashed and ended up in the ER twice in a 24-hour period. On the second visit, a mono test was performed and came back positive.

Now, skipping a lot of unpleasant details, it is sixteen months later, and I am still nowhere close to being an athlete again. I can only occasionally run about two miles and still function the next day. If I exert myself two days in a row, I will almost certainly not be functional on the third day. I am no longer in the acute phase of mono, that lasted about 13 months, and am thankfully experiencing less pain, but I do seem to have relapses and seem to be in the middle of one right now. I am struggling to learn my limitations and even more so to accept them. I cannot describe how utterly heartbroken I am to have lost my physical abilities. I feel as though I am trapped in an alien body. This is not how I wanted to spend my mid-twenties! What if this lasts the rest of my life...?

I've always eaten healthily but have further altered my diet, am taking supplements, and have seen numerous doctors, most of whom dont give a flying f*ck and refer me to some specialist who then refers me somewhere else. I feel as though no one is willing to or capable of help. I want my damn life back and am willing to try anything at this point.

Are there any other athletes out there who have been in this situation? What, if anything, can I do? How can I process this loss?


Replies

deleted_user
deleted_user  

All I can do is commiserate. I'm an athlete who was always completely healthy and rarely even got a cold. I run marathons and half marathons, I do olympic and half iron tris, do any workout you could invent, and to 3-4 mile nonstop swims. I had a lot of stuff on the calendar. Then I got pneumonia earlier this year, followed by tonsilitis, bronchitis, a cracked rib from coughing, and two knee injuries. I was out for 6 months. I was so happy to start training again this late summer, then after 4 weeks of light, easing back into it type training I got mono. It's only been two weeks of mono now....my dr. said 4-6 weeks but from others' experiences I'm worried I may not be in top form for a long long time. I've had to drop out of everything I had planned, and I've cried a couple times just out of sheer frustration. I keep it in perspective, because I know a lot worse things happen to people, but at the same time I feel sad, plus I live by myself and don't want to have friends over when i'm tired and contagious, so I feel so lonely too :(.
deleted_user
deleted_user  

Hi there,

here's a list of famous people, including athletes, with long term CFS (often started as Mono)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_people_with_chronic_fatigue_syndrome

Note that many of us are on the forum called CFS instead of mono, as many with mono just get better and we never hear from them anymore.

I can't help much as you seem to be doing the right ting anyway, but just so you know here's my story: I am not an athlete but i used to be a very active guy, jogging several times a week, doing my daily fitness routine, playinbg music, going out partying, travelling...and i was like shot in full flight with Epstein Barr (mononucleosis). I did not get better after 6 months as doctors said i would.

After a while it is no longer referred to as mono but as post viral fatigue syndrome, or chronic fatigue syndrome, or again M.E. in the UK and Ireland.

Some people get worse and worse BUT many recover, albeit slowly.

21 months on and although not totally cured yet my life is so much better than just a year ago. I am just full of hope that in a year or two i should be back to who i was before. It could happen before that, i hope!

Wishing you all the best :-)
deleted_user
deleted_user  

So glad that you all posted this info. My son is a young athlete. He plays multiple sports. He started running fever with a sore throat at the beginning of Feb. He was prescribed the usual Amoxicillin. A couple of weeks later we returned and got a stronger Rx. In the meantime, he was miserable, complaining about struggling to even lift his head. He quit the track team, his travelling baseball team, and his soccer team. I knew that something more was wrong.

We are now at the 6 week mark with no real signs of improvement. He is such a healthy and active teen that I thought he would return to normal by now. He is starting to experience some depression from the loss of activity and isolation from friends. I feel terrible for him and I feel helpless.
deleted_user
deleted_user  

I'm right there with you, nsj7. I used to run 3 - 5 miles every day and I did strength training, CrossFit, or a combination of both, 3 days a week, but after being diagnosed with mono 18 months ago, my exercise routine came to a halt.

Before getting mono, I rarely ever got sick and always had a lot of energy. My friends always called me "Super Woman" because I was constantly on the go.

Anyhow, I got sick in November of 2010. I was working long hours at a job that I hated, and I still would come home and exercise, clean my house, and take care of my dogs. Now, I feel completely wiped after just going to the grocery store--not normal for a 23 year old.

My symptoms during the first year:
 -102 fever that would only respond to taking both Tylenol and Ibuprofen at the same time--only to come back again after the medication wore off.

-Swollen lymphnodes in my neck, which were extremely painful

-Severe sore throat (reminds me of how my throat felt after having my tonsils surgically removed years ago--so yeah, VERY painful)

-Achy joints

-Chills

-Night sweats

-Fatigue

-Vomiting

***These symptoms occurred once a month, every month, for the first year, and lasted about 5 days.

My Current Symptoms:
-Fever of about 100, sometimes 101

-Swollen lymphnodes in neck that are painful to the touch

-Sore throat that isn't quite as severe, but still painful

-Chills

-Achy joints

***These symptoms have been occurring for the past 6 months, once every month, and last about 4 days.

I've gone to four different doctors about this. The first one basically told me that I was getting a new virus every month, even though I told him that it was HIGHLY unusual for me to get sick so often. He refused to believe that mono was still in my system after 3 months, so he refused to re-test me for it.

The next doctor ran all sorts of tests on me. She tested me for HIV, cancer, lupus, arthritis--you name it, I was tested for it. She concluded that I was getting a different virus each month as well.

The third doctor referred me to a specialist, FINALLY. She said that my symptoms weren't normal, so off I went to an infectious disease specialist.

The specialist tested me for mono again, and he said that it was still active in my body, and that I basically have to wait it out. He said that he had mono in the past, and he knows how frustrating it can be, but he said that I should rest, and only exercise when I feel well enough to.

Now, I go running maybe twice a week when I'm feeling energetic, and I can only run 2 miles at a time, and the next couple of days, I feel beyond exhausted, like I'd actually just ran a marathon the day before instead of 2 miles.

I also feel pathetic when I do strength training, because even though I'm a small woman, I used to be able to do squats with weight, but now I can't even do squats with just the bar, and I struggle to just do body weight squats.

My energy level has improved, but I'm still not as energetic as I used to be, and I find myself drinking caffeinated beverages more often than I used to, especially if I have a lot of tasks to do during the day.

I don't know if I should just stop exercising altogether, or keep exercising whenever I feel like it. I mean, I don't know if exercise is going to make it take longer to get this mono out of my system, or if it really won't make a difference either way.

It's so frustrating. I mean, my symptoms are improving, but I'm still getting sick every single month. I'm constantly having to cancel plans with friends because I'm not well enough to go out, and I find myself somewhat isolated, because no one else really understands what I'm going through. It's like they think I'm faking it, or something.

Does anyone know of any supplements to take to alleviate some of the symptoms? I already take a multivitamin and vitamin D, and I am going to start taking vitamin C, but is there anything else that boosts the immune system? I'm ready to be over this crap already. 18 months is a long time to be sick.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you all so much.
deleted_user
deleted_user  

I have recently posted under "endurance athlete/surfer" ....If you read my post you will see that I have had a similar experience as an athlete with mono. I am still having relapses that consist of swollen glands ,fatigue and congestion. The good news is the time between the relapses are farther apart and seem to be less severe. As of now , with much research all I have found that can be done is to try and build your immune system. Try to get consistent regular sleep. I have found that starting with some light exercise actually helps, especially from a psychological standpoint. If you are still having symptoms or dealing with mono I would be curious to hear how you are doing and if you have found anything that works well for your healing process?

https://www.dailystrength.org/group/mononucleosis/discussion/athletes-crushed-by-mono

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