Infectious Mononucleosis (cont.)
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
In this Article
- Infectious mononucleosis (mono) facts
- What is infectious mononucleosis?
- What is the cause of mono?
- What are the risk factors for mono?
- How is mono transmitted or spread? What is the incubation period for mono? What is the contagious period for mono?
- What are the symptoms of mono?
- What are the signs of mono?
- What tests do health care professionals use to diagnose infectious mono?
- What health care specialists treat infectious mono?
- What is the usual course and treatment of mono?
- What are the complications of mono?
- What is the prognosis of mono?
- Is it possible to prevent mono?
What are the symptoms of mono?
The initial symptoms of mono are
- a general lack of energy or malaise,
- a loss of appetite, and
These initial symptoms can last from one to three days before the more intense symptoms of the illness begin. The more common intense symptoms include
- a severe sore throat and
- fever, which may be persistent.
It is typically the severe sore throat that prompts people to contact their doctor.
What are the signs of mono?
In addition to a fever from 102 F-104 F, the most common signs of mono are
- a very reddened throat and tonsils (tonsillitis) and
- swollen lymph nodes in the neck that typically occur on both sides.
The tonsils have a whitish coating in at least one-third of the cases. The spleen (sometimes referred to as the body's biggest lymph node) is an organ found in the left upper abdomen underneath the rib cage, which becomes enlarged or swollen in about half of patients with mono. An enlarged liver and abnormalities in liver function tests (blood tests) may be detected (see Complications, below). Some of patients have a splotchy red rash over the body, which has a similar appearance to the rash of measles. Early in the course of disease (over the first few days of illness), a temporary swelling (edema) of both upper eyelids may appear.
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