Mononucleosis is technically called infectious mononucleosis or glandular fever, but is generally referred to as "mono" for short. It occurs primarily between the ages of 10 and 35 years old. When younger children are infected, it causes little or no illness. Such exposure does, however, create an immunity to the disease. Nearly 90% of Americans have antibodies for mononucleosis by age 40. Mono has an incubation period of 30 to 40 days and the symptoms usually last 7 to 14 days but can last for several weeks. The virus can stay alive within the body for several months. The name mononucleosis comes from the fact that the disease distorts the white blood cells, causing them to only have one nucleus. Only a blood test called the mononucleosis spot test can determine if someone has the disease.
SYMPTOMS OF MONONUCLEOSIS
The following symptoms can be present with mono, but most likely not all will be. Sore throat, usually red Enlarged lymph nodes in all parts of the body Fever Nausea Loss of appetite Extreme fatigue Enlarged spleen (2/3 of mono patients) Ulceration of the pharynx (sometimes) Swelling of the upper eyelid Trouble breathing Rapid heart beat Red rash on the body (about 15% of mono patients) Oversensitivity to light