Mononucleosis is an infectious viral disease that affects the respiratory system, liver and lymphatic system. It usually affects adolescents and young adults from ages 12 to 40. The virus is transmitted from person to person by saliva, as in kissing, shared food or drink, or coughing.
Signs and symptoms include fever, sore throat, appetite loss, fatigue, swollen lymph glands, enlarged spleen and liver, headache, and body ache. Risk increases with stress, an illness that has lowered resistance, fatigue or overwork. The high incidence among college students may result from inadequate rest and crowded living conditions.
There is a blood test available to determine if you have "mono." It determines the presence of antibodies in the blood that have responded to the viral infection.
Treatment is generally supportive and recovery is usually within 10 days, although fatigue can last longer. Extra rest and proper nutrition are important. Athletic activities may need to be curtailed for a few weeks. Antibiotics are not recommended unless strep throat is proven.
CONTACT HEALTH SERVICE OR YOUR FAMILY DOCTOR FOR FURTHER INFORMATION OR CONCERNS.