The incubation period of the virus (the time between when you contract the infection and when you start to have symptoms) is four to six weeks. The signs and symptoms of mono typically last for one to two months.
Symptoms may include:
- Sore throat
- Swollen lymph glands in the neck and armpits
- Muscle weakness
- Swollen tonsils
- Night sweats
- Occasionally, your spleen or liver may also swell, but mononucleosis is almost never fatal.
The tests include:
- White Blood Cell Count
- EBV Antibodies (“Mono Spot Test”)
There is no known treatment for infectious mononucleosis, and no antiviral drugs or vaccines are available; however, your doctor may prescribe a type of medication called corticosteroids to reduce throat and tonsil swelling. Symptoms usually resolve on their own in one to two months. Treatment is aimed at easing your symptoms. This includes using over-the-counter medicines to reduce fever and techniques to calm a sore throat, such as gargling salt water. Other home treatments that may ease symptoms include:
- Getting a lot of rest
- Drinking a lot of fluids (water is best)
- Eating warm chicken soup
- Using over-the-counter pain medication
If your symptoms get worse or you experience intense abdominal pain, contact your physician. One of the complications of mono is ruptured spleen, which is a life-threatening situation.