Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Health & setbacks

You may have realized I had a rough week last week. I didn't go into a lot of details because I wanted to wait and see how things turned out, I'll admit there were a few things that scared me...but anyway, it's time to share.

Last Saturday I came down with a pretty ugly sore throat. I had just gotten over a sore throat/fever illness a week prior to that, and so I'm pretty sure this was a relapse of that. By Sunday I was in so much pain that I made myself go to the clinic to figure out what was going on. Let me interject here to say that I'm not really one to go to the doctors when I'm sick, I normally rough it out. But that's how awful I was feeling, I knew I had to go in. 

So a week ago Sunday I got tested for strep and it came back positive, so I got a prescription for an antibiotic. In addition to that, they were concerned about a heart murmur they were hearing...I've had one since I was a baby, but rare complications of strep can affect your heart and they wanted to make sure the two weren't related. The docs at the clinic told me I should mention it to my primary care doc.

Fast forward to Thursday, I still wasn't feeling any better, so I went in to see my doctor. She decided to give me a stronger antibiotic for my strep, then decided better be safe than sorry and go through the checklist of things to make sure my heart was good -

1) EKG
2) Blood samples (to test for bacteria growth in my blood)
3) Echo 

I had an EKG done on Thursday at the docs (that's the test where they hook you up to a computer with a bunch of nodes on your chest to map out your heart beat. There were some slightly irregular beats, but nothing of major concern. My doc sent me off to the lab to have my blood taken, and had me make an appointment to go to the local hospital for an echo.

Friday I was home, generally feeling like crap, when my doctor called with the results of my blood tests. She said they showed bacteria growth in my blood and that I needed to go to the ER immediately. Needless to say, I was scared and really had no idea what was going on. I've actually never been to the hospital (aside from birth), so I guess you could say I've been really lucky. Anyway, they took me in almost immediately (guess all you have to do is say "heart" and you get bumped to the top of the triage), and they sat me on a bed for roughly 3 hours while my attending, nurse, and doctor took turns coming over to see me. Finally after analyzing my previous tests, the ER doctor concluded that more than likely my original blood sample was contaminated (since turns out only one out of the four samples showed bacteria growth) and that I was not actually infected. PHEW!

However, we discussed the fact that I had been sick all week with no major improvements, and had some seriously swollen tonsils, and so they decided that to be on the safe side they'd take more blood to test again, but also test me for mono. Then they sent me on my way. All in all, not too bad for a trip to the ER. 

Didn't hear anything from the doc Saturday, Sunday, or Monday, but ended up going to have my echo done yesterday. This is a more advanced test, basically an ultrasound of your heart, and they can do all of these fancy things to check your valves, size of your heart, blood flow, etc. It was pretty cool to watch it all on the monitor and hear my heart beat super loud. I don't actually have the results yet, they'll send everything to my doctor for her to review, but the tech told me she didn't see anything that worried her and didn't believe I'd need to come back for anything. DOUBLE PHEW! (Though, not 100% out of the clear here until my doctor does in fact tell me she's happy with the results).

Today, my doctor finally called me with the test results from my ER trip. 

Good news - no bacterial infection
Bad news - I have mono (if you don't know what that is, here's the WebMD link)

My doctor said she expects it'll be a COUPLE WEEKS before I'm fully recovered. Say what? That's a weight-loss blogger's nightmare. Furthermore, from my internet reading, I've learned that it can actually take months to get over mono 100%. All I can say is...this is not cool. I'm not really sure how soon I can start working out again, my doc basically said I could work out as long as I had enough energy to do so, but at this point most activity leaves me feeling really tired. So...on the couch I will be, attempting to get max amounts of R&R. In the meantime, I'm really trying to stay motivated, so if anybody has any great weight loss blogs they read send me the link! I've been doing a lot more blog reading now than ever. 

I also have my very first 5k in about 2.5 weeks....I'm a bit nervous since my C25K training has been halted, and I'm not even sure I'll be up for running that soon. I just have no idea what to expect. 

Have any of you ever had mono? How long did it take you to recover?


  1. Yikes! I am glad to hear that you finally know what it is and it isn't anything having to do with your heart. That is really scary! I have never had mono, but in high school my best friend had mono. She was an athlete, and I'm sorry to say that it did take her several months before she was back to normal as far as athletic ability. I remember that she felt pretty good after 3-4 weeks, but just didn't have the energy when doing workouts. Just get plenty of rest and focus on getting better. There will be lots of other 5ks if this one's not in the cards for you.

  2. Ya know... every time I read you blog and you talked about how bad your throat hurt I was thinking that you might have mono. I had mono when I first got married at 19. Talk about romantic... It is super painful and it took a few weeks for the throat to get better. I was a couch potato and unemployed at the time so I wouldn't of noticed how my energy levels were. I was always tired anyway. I had no clue at the time that mono made your throat hurt so bad. I always thought it was something to do with being tired all the time. Hope you feel better soon. I totally know how you feel. I've been there too. Take care!

  3. I had a serious case of mono in my teens. I turned orange and had liver complications. It will take a few months to recover. I know. I'm sorry. It's the truth. I would not have been physically able to run a 5k...I am so bummed for you. Rest Rest Rest. It's really important. You don't want complications or to delay your recovery. Will be sending healing thoughts your way.

  4. I had mono in college and was out for 3+ weeks, ending up withdrawing from a class since it was too much to keep up.

    My suggestion is when you do feel you have energy, try doing Yoga or a slow pace walk - something not as intense but will still keep you motivated and doing exercise.

    I know what it's like to be out of the game so to speak. I was in an accident a year ago that prevented me from working out at an intense pace. All I could think about was how much I wanted to work out! Take it slow and listen to your body!

  5. I had a very serious case of mono in high school, and it took me about 4 months to recover, and even then, not fully. Yikes!
    Read lots of books and watch lots of netflix. Take it easy, lady!

  6. wow! You have had quite a week! Hope you are feeling better soon

  7. Oh, no! I hope you're back to better health in no time. In the meantime, rest up! It's what your body needs. Take it easy.

    You're in my thoughts and prayers. :)

  8. Hi Friend,
    I had mono our junior year at ARHS...don't know if you remember. From the time I was actually diagnosed, to feeling 100% was probably about two months. I got it over the summer and knew something was really wrong when I couldn't stay awake for more than 10 minutes in Driver's Ed. I was forced to leave the field hockey team (got diagnosed right before double sessions) and remember having a permanent pass from my doctor to go to the nurse's office to take naps during the day whenever I needed it. Good news is that chances of ever getting it ever again are slim to none! Feel better, chica!