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Old 03-22-2010, 11:53 AM   #1
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How long can mono last in adults

It's going on 5 months for me, I've been having more good days now, but right when I think I'm recovered I'll have a day I don't feel so well. How long does this last?

 
Old 03-23-2010, 02:44 PM   #2
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Re: How long can mono last in adults

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It's going on 5 months for me, I've been having more good days now, but right when I think I'm recovered I'll have a day I don't feel so well. How long does this last?
Mono is an interesting illness because it's not the infection which causes problems for the patient--it's the body's immune reaction to the virus. Mono is USUALLY caused by the immune system's reaction to the Epstein Barr Virus (EBV), but can also be seen with things like CMV and toxoplasmosis. These should be tested for when a person presents with mono. Mono is not JUST a disease where the person gets tired--you have to prove it with blood tests.

Most people who are exposed to EBV don't get mono....their immune system just takes care of it and that's that. You're one of the unlucky people who are having a reaction. The virus is long-gone from your body, but unfortunately the immune system and its production of cytokines (the stuff that makes you feel all tired and flu like) can last for up to a year after you were affected by the mono. You should, however, have some routine bloodwork done by your family doctor to make sure there's not another reason for the fatigue and malaise.

 
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Old 03-23-2010, 10:22 PM   #3
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Re: How long can mono last in adults

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Mono is an interesting illness because it's not the infection which causes problems for the patient--it's the body's immune reaction to the virus. Mono is USUALLY caused by the immune system's reaction to the Epstein Barr Virus (EBV), but can also be seen with things like CMV and toxoplasmosis. These should be tested for when a person presents with mono. Mono is not JUST a disease where the person gets tired--you have to prove it with blood tests.

Most people who are exposed to EBV don't get mono....their immune system just takes care of it and that's that. You're one of the unlucky people who are having a reaction. The virus is long-gone from your body, but unfortunately the immune system and its production of cytokines (the stuff that makes you feel all tired and flu like) can last for up to a year after you were affected by the mono. You should, however, have some routine bloodwork done by your family doctor to make sure there's not another reason for the fatigue and malaise.
Thanks so much harka! I really appreciate the response. I have an follow up with my doctor tomorrow and he had also said it could be a 6 month to a year deal, but he didn't explain why.

I appreciate the insight into the bodies response to EBV. I must have a robust immune system for such a drastic response!
Just a quick follow up question for you. Since you say the virus is long gone from my body by now, do you think it would be safe to start pushing myself a bit harder, exercising more, running etc without risk of a relapse?
Am I correct in thinking that my body has built enough immune memory to prevent the virus form infecting me again? Or should I wait until my immune system has stabilized before I get back into to my workout routine..Biking, running, paintball etc..

 
Old 03-24-2010, 12:35 AM   #4
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Re: How long can mono last in adults

Can I sugest a high potentcy multivitamin (say, Twinlab Daily Two, 2 caps daily with food)

The extra vitamins and minerals can give a real "boods" to the immune system and help speed recovery.
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Old 03-25-2010, 06:25 AM   #5
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Re: How long can mono last in adults

Hi again!

Sorry, I made a mistake when I said the virus is "long gone", in fact, it's completely the opposite. When people are exposed to EBV, they eventually control it, and it basically goes to sleep the body. It's possible for it to "wake up" later if you become immunosuppressed (i.e. from HIV or cancer chemotherapy), but in the vast majority of people it doesn't. What I meant to say is that the EBV is no longer causing problems in the body, it is the immune system's "hyperactivity".

I think the public has become slightly misinformed by the way the immune system works. There is all sorts of talk about immune system "boosting" and stuff like that. In truth, it doesn't really work that way. There are definitely things which can impair the immune system, but you can't really "boost" to "make it work better" in any way. The most you can do is stay healthy so that it has the best chance at staying 100%.

After an illness, yes the immune system has been revved, but unless you're suffering from a disease causing chronic inflammation for a long time (e.g. silicosis in the lungs) it's not really "spent". In other words, you can do activity as tolerated. If you get tired, it's not because you've busted your immune system--it's just because you're physically deconditioned after the initial infection.

Unfortunately, there are people who after a bout of infection get a "post-infectious fatigue" syndrome which can last for a loooong time. Fortunately though, this very rarely happens in otherwise young healthy men.

 
Old 03-25-2010, 10:06 AM   #6
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Re: How long can mono last in adults

Thanks Harka for the answers, I read some of your other responses on this forum and it sounds like you have a great deal of medical knowledge. I appreciate you taking your time to give me some answers. I saw my Doctor the other day and he gave me the okay to start and exercise routine again.
I will say though this "mono" experience has been the worst, never been so sick in my life. Unfortunately there's a lot of bad info on mono/EBV on the net, so it's nice to hear the facts of the matter.

 
Old 03-25-2010, 11:14 AM   #7
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Re: How long can mono last in adults

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Originally Posted by sporque View Post
Thanks Harka for the answers, I read some of your other responses on this forum and it sounds like you have a great deal of medical knowledge. I appreciate you taking your time to give me some answers. I saw my Doctor the other day and he gave me the okay to start and exercise routine again.
I will say though this "mono" experience has been the worst, never been so sick in my life. Unfortunately there's a lot of bad info on mono/EBV on the net, so it's nice to hear the facts of the matter.
Glad to be of help! Now go and exercise! (to your level of tolerability of course )

 
Old 04-22-2010, 10:17 AM   #8
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Re: How long can mono last in adults

I have had a case of chronic recurring mono now for 2 1/2 yrs. This is by far the longest bout I have had, but my Titer test is still high after 2 1/2 yrs. Once you have it....depending on your immune system..you can get it again!! I have had some doctors say you can only get it once but that is not true and those doctors don't know enough about it. My Titer test on this last bout came back at 3000....the normal range is 0-90. It has gone down a bit but still well over the normal range.
As far as working out etc....I would hold off until you are completely recovered. It is very easy to relaspe.

 
Old 04-29-2010, 09:05 AM   #9
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Re: How long can mono last in adults

Mono (EBV) is an interesting illness. As mentioned previously, once you get Mono you have it for life. EBV is a herpes class virus which means once a host cell is infected with the virus, the virus integrates its own DNA/RNA into the host which becomes permanent. The body doesn't really build a strong immunity to EBV because EBV attacks the immune system B-cells (which develop antibodies). The immune system does adapt to the virus and future outbreaks are recognized and contained faster.

Being that it is a herpes class virus (like the strain that causes cold sores, or genital herpes, or chicken pox) it usually will come back in times when the body/immune system is weakened by illness, age, stress, etc.. That is why older adults get outbreaks of the chicken pox virus later in life (in the form of shingles) and as for cold sores and additional mono attacks....take a walk around your nearest college campus during final exams. People start to look rather nasty after a week or two of no sleep and poor eating. Core sores, exhausted and starved..much like living zombies.

J

 
Old 03-17-2012, 10:41 PM   #10
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Re: How long can mono last in adults

After reading this thread, I think what I have may be related to Mono or EBV.

Ive been sick as a dog for almost a year. I cant workout without being massively fatigued for weeks, I cough my butt off all day, every day.

Mucous in my throat all the time, muscle cramps, dizziness, get cold really easy, dry skin, dry red eyes, dry mouth, limbs going to sleep ... for the past 9 months! =(

No doctor I have seen has helped me at all... they have no clue what it is.

I dont know whether to kill myself or what... Im going to royally screw up my college plan because of this,.. so what do I do?

Last edited by TheSliceman; 03-17-2012 at 10:48 PM.

 
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