What is Glandular Fever? Edit
Glandular Fever (GF) is a viral infection that mostly affects young adults. GF is thought to develop after being infected with the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV). Also known as infectious mononucleosis or mono. Most of the symptoms of GF will pass within two to three weeks, however fatigue can last for several months.
How does Glandular Fever Affect the Lymphatic System? Edit
As the body's immune system fights off this virus the lymph glands swell. This results in feeling swollen specifically in the glands in the neck and armpits.
Glandular fever has a variety of effects on the lymphatic system. The spleen may become enlarged increasing the risk of it rupturing, swollen tonsils may be observed alongside swollen lymph nodes, and a swollen liver. This swelling impacts these organs abilities to perform their jobs in the lymphatic system, and overall increases your chances of infection due to the decreased performance of the white blood cells in the lymph.
Signs and Symptoms Edit
- flu symptoms: fever, aches, headaches, nausea
- sore throat
- swollen glands
- skin rash
- loss of appetite
- mild pain in the spleen
- swelling around eyes
It is most common to get glandular fever will all the signs and symptoms of you are an adolescent, or young adult. Young children tend to have fewer symptoms, and the infection often goes unrecognized. A physical examination is the first step to diagnosis, it is at this point your doctor will look for the swelling in the lymph nodes, spleen, tonsils and/or liver. This combined with the signs and symptoms you have, and their duration will give the doctor an idea of what you have. If additional confirmation is needed a blood test may be performed, an antibody blood test will check to see if the Epstein-Bar virus is present in your system, and a white-blood cell count allows you doctor to look for an elevated number of, or abnormal looking lymphocytes. The results from the last blood test will not tell your doctor what you have for sure, but they will point them in the right direction. ]
If abdominal pain or difficulty swallowing occurs, seek medical assistance. Contact sports should be avoided during the first month of being infected because of the risk of damaging the spleen.
There is no specific treatment for glandular fever, as antibiotics don’t work against viral infections such as it. The best treatment is bed rest, good nutrition, and plenty of fluids. There are some complications that may arise while infected, and in most cases these complications are more serious than the infection itself. The most common complications include is extreme enlargement of the spleen, as it may rupture and you may require surgery, and liver problems. Other less common complications include anemia, thrombocytopenia, inflammation of the heart muscles, meningitis, encephalitis, and Guillian-Barren syndrome. Signs and symptoms such as a fever and sore throat usually lessen within a couple of weeks, but fatigue, enlarged lymph nodes and a swollen spleen may last for a few weeks longer.
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