Archive for December 26th, 2010

posted by admin on Dec 26

This affliction of college-age students is often jokingly referred to as the “kissing disease.” The symptoms of mononucleosis, or “mono,” include sore throat, fever, headache, nausea, chills, and a pervasive weakness or tiredness in the initial stages. As the disease progresses, lymph nodes may become increasingly enlarged, and jaundice, spleen enlargement, aching joints, and body rashes may occur.
Theories on the transmission and treatment of mononucleosis are highly controversial. Caused by the Epstein-Barr virus, mononucleosis is readily detected through a monospot test, a blood test that measures the percentage of specific forms of white blood cells. Because many viruses are caused by transmission of body fluids, many people once believed that young people passed the disease on by kissing. Although this is still considered a possible cause, mononucleosis is not believed to be highly contagious. It does not appear to be easily contracted through normal, everyday personal contact. Multiple cases among family members are rare, as are cases between intimate partners.
Treatment of mononucleosis is often a lengthy process that involves bed rest, balanced nutrition, and medications to control the symptoms of the disease. Gradually, the body develops a form of immunity to the disease and the person returns to normal activity.