9 Days ago, January 5th, I woke up with the “hmmm, somethings not right” feeling. That tickle in my throat, that wasn’t a tickle, the cough that never coughed and the mysterious running nose attached to clear sinus. Maybe it was just “morning grogginess” – I didn’t let that stop me from enjoying they day. I had plans to ride my bike downtown and spend the day enjoying the Farmer’s Market, and do a little day drinking. By 11am I was on my bike, cruising the town, bundled up in my jacket and scarf, keeping warm just in case that morning grogginess turned out to be something more.
6 hours later, it was time to wrap up the bike ride and go over to a friend’s birthday party. So far so good, I was feeling fine. 8pm we showed up for the festivities and 3 hours later I was not doing so good. At this point, the mellow party had moved to a bar and my body was beginning to feel like it was freezing over. Shivering and starting to feel dizzy, it was now a little passed midnight, it was time for me to call it a night. I was officially getting sick. The next day would be the same day for the next three days, it was like Groundhog Day (1993 Movie Starring Bill Murray) the days would repeat themselves with little to no change in the condition of my health. Watching the movie’s “Outbreak” and “Contagion” didn’t help either. Anyway, what was I feeling… ?
- Fever 102-104.1 Degrees
- Ice-Cold Limbs
- Burning Hot Head (Especially Ears)
- Explosive Headache (Stroke like, pulsating ‘POP’ in left side of my head over 8-14min for 72hrs)
- Coughing with Minor Lung Mucus/Phlegm
- Body Aches
- Soaking Sweat Spells (4-8 changes of clothes per day)
These symptoms continued from Saturday 11pm – Thursday Morning. I finally went to the doctor on Tuesday where she examined me and drew the following conclusion:
“You definitely have an unknown virus, that I am confident is the influenza virus. You do not appear to have any neurological damage, which I am happy to say rules out meningitis. Considering you have a fever still, it is safe to assume you are still extremely contagious and I recommend you limit your exposure to others as much as possible. If you would have seen a doctor within 24hrs of your fever/symptoms, I would have put you on antibiotics. However, since you are now over 36-48hrs into the illness, there is nothing I can recommend other than Tylenol 800 and Codeine. Antibiotics/Tamiflu would be ineffective at this stage, only reducing the illness by 12-24hrs. Nothing significant.”
So that was that. I filled my prescriptions and carried on. The Tylenol 800 helped, the Codeine was a special treat which knocked my ass out! Today, 9 days later… I am confident to say I am over it. I’m about 97% back to normal health.
- Day 1 – 11am Didn’t feel right. Minor post nasal drip…
- Day 1 – 3pm Tickle in the throat, nothing to worry about…
- Day 1 – 8pm Felt fine. Nothing to cause alarm
- Day 1 – 10:40pm Still good… feeling a little warm though. Was it the room? Was it my head/body? I don’t know…
- Day 1 – 11pm DEATH WAS AT MY DOOR! Shaking and freezing, with a full-blown fever of 104
- Day 2 – Fever / Body Aches / Horrible Explosive Headache / Cold Body / Boiling Head
- Day 3 – Fever / Body Aches / Horrible Explosive Headache / Cold Body / Boiling Head / Sweating
- Day 4 – Went to the Doctor, continued… Fever / Body Aches / Horrible Explosive Headache / Cold Body / Boiling Head / Sweating
- Day 5 – Reduced Fever / Horrible Explosive Headache / Sweating
- Day 6 – Feeling good, minor headache
- Day 7 – Went back to work.
Did I get a flu shot this year? – No, I did not.
Will I be getting a flu shot this year? – Yes. Although I may have had the flu already, that was only one strain of the virus. There are many more out there, most which are covered in the shot
What was the worst part of the flu? – The pain. By body was ice-cold, while my head was on fire. I slept with ice packs on my head, especially on both ears. Both ears felt like two hot irons were pressed against my head for 3 days straight. Pair that with the “explosive firecracker” of a headache, and it was not a pleasant experience.
Recommendations – Go to the doctor as soon as you show symptoms. Get a flu shot, avoid crowds, limit touching your face as much as possible, wash your hands as often as possible, and maintain a healthy diet.
UPDATE: The latest activity map from the CDC (Center for Disease Control) shows that our nation is covered in “WIDESPREAD” exposure. See here: http://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/usmap.htm