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Daughter has mono

deb922deb922 Registered User Posts: 4,689 Senior Member
edited September 2008 in Parent Cafe
We just got back from the doctor. She tested positive for mono. She leaves for orientation on Wednesday. The Dr. does not want her to go to school until Sunday. She is broken hearted, she just stopped being nervous and getting excited for school, now she is convinced that she won't know anything and won't meet anyone.

Any suggestions? She also has an audition for the orchestra on Friday, she is so upset about that and really wants to make the orchestra, which she has a good chance as they gave her a music scholarship.

She just came downstairs to tell me that we shared a drink on Saturday! I wonder if all of us are going to get mono (including her boyfriend who also starts school on Monday).
Post edited by deb922 on

Replies to: Daughter has mono

  • zoosermomzoosermom Registered User Posts: 25,968 Senior Member
    Be careful and put her health first. My daughter ended her freshman year with mono. A cascade of complications followed, including several hospitalizations and surgery. She will not be returning to her school this fall at least in part because of lingering health concerns. I implore you to err on the side of caution and to take this seriously.
  • mominvamominva Registered User Posts: 2,810 Senior Member
    Without knowing her symptoms and typical bounce back from illness, it is hard for us to advise.
    Besides positive mono results, did the doctor get liver function tests?
    If they are normal, I'd be inclined to go to the school and stick around till Sunday, possibly 'kidnapping' D to sleep in the hotel but allowing her to participate in the audition and some bonding activities.
  • garlandgarland Registered User Posts: 15,081 Senior Member
    If mominva's option is do-able, it sounds like a great idea.
  • deb922deb922 Registered User Posts: 4,689 Senior Member
    The doctor did not do a liver function test. She's usually healthy as a horse. We are all so confused. My H has to cancel his vacation and schedule other days to take her so I need to know what to do soon. He's out of town and was coming back tomorrow to take her to school Wed. morning.
  • oldfortoldfort Registered User Posts: 21,028 Senior Member
    Not everyone comes down with mono that's exposed to it. Apparently most of us have been exposed to the virus, and only a few come down with it. If she is not completely wiped out, I would opt for mominva's option. What is important is for her to get plenty of rest for a long while. I am not sure what's the difference between going to school on Wed vs Sun.
  • Faline2Faline2 Registered User Posts: 4,171 Senior Member
    our son had mono when I picked him up for winter break freshman year..his roommate and friends were not worried because when you read about mono you will see that many many adults carry it and shed the virus off and on all their lives...or we had it as children and never knew and have built in immunities. Don't fret about others now..be in the present.
    My son was instructed by us not to put any food back in his dorm room fridge after he started eating/drinking it while in recovery to protect his roommie a little...but he gave mono to no one else that we heard about.
    ..and a sharp pediatrician made a lucky guess and he tested positive before he had struggled with fever for more than 3 days...no confusing diagnoses, failed exams, tests, and excessive sleeping when everyone else was studying or socializing, so he was very lucky to be ill during Christmas and did not have the complications that students who struggle to do their school work and not go home have to face. He was no longer tired by time to return to school..but he was still rather fuzzy in focus.
    Still...he failed to maintain his health second semester. He had blown his body clock at home resting for two weeks which was actually a bit too much rest as he was never deathly ill either...and it was winter..short days, little light...and it took forever for him to get back into sleep at midnight up at 8am again....he had to learn the hard way that he would not make it staying up till two am socializing, sleeping four or five hours..and he ended up taking a long route back to health which involved getting over the irrational fear of relapse, resuming routine light exercise, and getting his body clock back to a working mans hours...and he dropped a course where he was not performing..which he did very well in the next fall. He learned how to suck it up and go to the academic dean and do a one time only course drop.
    I can imagine your daughter wants to be at all the orientation events..but she will find that there will be a score of people with mono this year, she will not be that unusual..and people will be "glad" she stays home longer frankly...let her rest. She needs to be as past the illness cycle as possible.

    Orchestra will allow her a delayed tryout I bet..although as an orchestra mom myself..I wonder how you will manage her "seat assignment" and if that is delayed, time to have her write the symphony person.
    I would make sure she consulted with her academic dean about perhaps choosing a lighter courseload for this semester...and also caution her to check in with an advisor for some concessions for her should she feel she is struggling. I am so sorry she won't be quite herself for so much of the pre classroom mixers, but if you take resting seriously on the front end, she may actually be able to handle the academics and keep her game up.

    Your best bet is to focus on how great it is that she will develop immunities to mono before final exams and a paper is due...so sorry that this has rained on her parade!
  • somemomsomemom Registered User Posts: 10,467 Senior Member
    MY hyper, sporty, high energy DD got mono during finals week in HS and was napping a lot and under the weather for her, but barely campared to an average person.

    My DD who catches everything was down for weeks with mono. It seemed like it really followed each girl's natural immune system response.

    The generally healthiest DD was respectful of the illness and not in the middle of sports or anything and she did take naps, it was such a surprise to her to sleep in the day, so she was careful and she was over it very quickly.
  • deb922deb922 Registered User Posts: 4,689 Senior Member
    Thanks everyone, all your advice was very helpful. Since we didn't have any time to decide, we decided to err on the side of caution. I called the school and we will check her into the dorm on Sunday. The doctor wanted to wait until Monday or Tues. but I think that will put her behind and it seems that would be more stress than she already has.

    We'll see how things progress in the next couple of days. The doctor said that the mono was in the beginning stage and she will get sicker before she gets better. I'm hoping that it will be mild (I can hope).

    If she's really sick on Saturday we will have to decide what to do then.
  • InthebizInthebiz Registered User Posts: 632 Member
    Mono really varies from person to person. For some it's pretty mild and they can go on with their day to day activities making sure to rest and eat well. For others, it's months in bed.

    My ex-husband had a severe case his first year in medical school. He ended up missing the entire second semester and repeated the entire first year the following year. Despite how sick he was and the fact we were newly married so we had had lots of close personal contact(!) before he got diagnosed, I never got it. It's not as contagious as its "kissing disease" nickname implies.

    Good luck to your daughter!
  • musmom2musmom2 Registered User Posts: 500 Member
    My S came home with mono labor day weekend of his freshman year. Turned out fine, but was very sick. Be sure to contact the Dean or dept. chair, they can let everyone know who needs to know (profs. etc.). Chances are they will be very nice and accommodating, as this is not an unusual situation with college students. If she has to drop down to 12 or so credit hours, it's not the end of the world. See also the current "Mono" thread in the Parents Forum, page 3!
  • huguenothuguenot Registered User Posts: 514 Member
    I just can't encourage you enough to be careful and impress on your daughter to be careful!

    I got mono as a teenager, and took a week off, thought I took it easy enough, but evidently not. It came back several times over the next few years - every time I got run down. Finally a specialist at Duke said that it had gone "latent" - meaning the virus was still in my body ready to start growing like crazy again whenever my immune system was weaker than usual. My health really suffered for over ten years because of this!

    My recommendations:

    Tell her she has *got* to get enough sleep, like 8 hours every night regardless.

    Make sure the administration and professors know off the bat.

    Make sure she understands that her long term health is more important than friends, getting started "right", even school. You can repeat a semester if you have to, but you can't trade anything for your health.

    Encourage her to take an easy load this semester.

    Keep an eye on her and make sure she's seeing a doctor when necessary at school.

    Sorry to be so grim, but this really affected my life.
  • lindz126lindz126 Registered User Posts: 1,915 Senior Member
    as others have pointed out there is a wide range of symptoms and severity with mono--- so possibly waiting a few more days permitting her to sleep as much as she needs may give the time to see she may not have a severe case. my daughter had mono last yr (hs junior) and missed few days initially, and slept 20 hrs a day for days... then was able to go to school sporadically, two days on two days off, weird how the illness fluctuates. my friend's daughter had no symptoms and missed no school. the school will need to be flexible and your d will need to realize that by pushing herself she will only end up missing more time. she'll need to listen to her body and sleep and rest as needed. good follow up w a physician checking spleen and liver is important...
  • deb922deb922 Registered User Posts: 4,689 Senior Member
    Thanks for the advice, it's very appreciated. It's been a rough day. She's feeling worse, I think that I will take her back to the doctor tomorrow.

    We are just going to wait and see how she feels later in the week. I have no idea what to do if she feels this bad on Saturday and I have a feeling that she will.

    What a crappy way to start out the year.

    My D is an engineering major. I have no idea what a easy course load would be.
  • swimcatsmomswimcatsmom Registered User Posts: 15,701 Senior Member
    If she feels really bad she may have to consider deferring a semester. Heartbreaking I know but be prepared for the possibility and talk to the school in advance just in case. I got Mono in my 20s and was one of those who was really sick. Funnily the symptoms appeared on the morning of a business trip to the US - my first time here - and I spent the week over here thinking people could not tell how sick was when i would excuse myself from meetings and go to the ladies and lean against the wall with sweat just pouring off me - i was in a daze the whole time i think. I was sick enough by the time I returned home that i was nearly hospitalized and then ended up missing work for over a month. It took me a long time to get better and I am sure the pushing myself the first week did not help. Looking after her health is the most important thing right now.
  • cangelcangel Registered User Posts: 4,127 Senior Member
    1) When do classes start?

    2) Is there a dean of freshman or someone else to call, possibly in the engineering department?

    I was a chemisty/biology double major - pre-med - and I had mono during my soph year of college. Luckily, it was during my "not sure I want to do this year" so I wasn't taking organic as I would have been had i stayed on the strict schedule. I was taking calculus. I got sick in mid Nov, and ended up coming home just before finals. I did go back second semester, but took a reduced schedule.
    Since she has not started and she is hoping to major in engineering, I think you and she need input from someone who has dealt with this situation before. A lot depends on how many engineering courses are available. She will definitely want to take a reduced course load, the question is should she think about deferring.
    Even if she has a relatively mild case of mono, she is a freshman in a difficult major - it will be tough for her. How far from home is she?? The temptation to overdo it will be very strong for a young girl in her position.
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