Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome - A Year and a Half in Hell
This is my story of living with Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome...
I believe that Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome is an illness that is not taken seriously enough and because of this, I believe any recovery time is lengthened.
It was summer 1999 and I was 20 years old. The whole thing started with a strange flu / cold, which lasted for about 2 hours! It came on suddenly and left just as quick. I didn't think much more of it that day and had no idea how bad things would get for me over the following months. ..
The next day I woke up with an incredible tightness around my neck as if someone was strangling me. I went to the doctors who suggested it may be Glandular Fever (Mononucleosis). I was tested for it a few times but they all came back negative.
Things just started to get worse and worse for me. I would have constant sore throats, headaches and body aches. To make matters worse, I started to lose a lot of weight. At my lowest point, I was under 7 stone.
For the first few months I regularly saw my doctor. They did loads of tests but they all came back negative. I hated going to the doctors because they were offering no answers. At one point I heard them saying 'What is he doing here?'
It was really scaring me. I started worrying that I had all types of illnesses until one doctor told me that I had Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome, which in hindsight should have been easy for them to work out considering the chain of events.
Life at home wasn't any easier. At that time I lived with my mother who did not believe I was ill
but just lazy. She threw me out. I couldn't believe how depressed I had become
and I felt so ill, sore throats from hell and constantly shattered.
Luckily for me, I had a very caring grandmother who took me in. She could see I was in bad shape. She would always comment on how thin i was. She was Italian and could cook up some amazing food! I had gone from an environment in which I was branded a liar to one of sanctuary
I spent most of my time at my gran's resting and eating the best food everyday and being encouraged to get better. Eventually I did get better but it felt like forever.
I found this site because currently I have now developed reiter's syndrome after an infection I contracted early last year. It hasn't been as bad as Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome but the diagnosing part, the depression and the isolation of it all heavily reminded me of that time in my life. I believe I will eventually feel better from this too but i cant help but feel, in my case anyway, that there is some genetic auto-immune part to play in this all and that proves that these illnesses are definitely not in the mind
I wish all of you who are currently sufferers, a speedy recovery. Remember it's not in your mind.
Good luck and god bless.