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Sick for over a week. What's happening to my body?
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bicoastalSURF posted:
Hello.

I am typically a very healthy person who rarely gets sick. But this winter I have been sick for the duration. I am trying to kick this cold and I don't know if there is something more serious going on.

A little background info: I live in New York having moved there from living my entire life in Southern California. This winter had been exceptionally long and very cold. Usually I get sick once a year, if that. I am a competitive swimmer who is also in graduate school and keep a very hectic schedule so I do not sleep a lot (typically I get 4-6 hours of sleep a night).

On to the symptoms: about 5 months ago (right before finals) my lymph nodes in my neck became VERY swollen and I was having trouble swallowing. I was put on the Z-pack and the swelling went down in 2-3 days. Two weeks after that I developed a bad cold (fever, runny nose, bad cough, and sore throat). I felt tired a lot but I thought that I just needed to rest. Fast forward a month and I developed another sore throat. I rested and felt better within 1 week. Now I have been sick with the current cold for almost 2 weeks. It hurts to swallow (but only on my right side) and I have a cough, bad runny nose with yellow/green mucus, and lots of congestion. I am trying to rest and get a good amount of sleep but these symptoms won't go away. Is it possible that I may have had mono when I first got sick and this is an aftermath of that? I am worried, because I usually never get sick but this winter I have been sick throughout. Thank you for reading this.
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Rod Moser, PA, PhD responded:
Yes, as a matter of fact, as I read you posting, I though "mono". You can get an EBV panel -- a sensitive mono test that will reveal if you have active mono, or a recent infection. Another possibility to consider would be chronic sinusitis.

It would be in your best interest to get a CBC (complete blood count), as well. You have been ill for much too long, so a search for underlying reasons would be very appropriate.