Saw the docta again today. Said my recovery is going normally, despite my complaints about not being able to breathe like a normal person. Apparently that happens when you have a month-long bout of bronchitis. I'm just impatient, I guess; I'm just tired of not having full lung capacity.
Dr. JK (those are his real initials... but you should still take him seriously) said that I definitely have had, wait for it... the flu on top of all this. I laughed and told him that my friends and I keep joking that I have swine flu. He didn't laugh. He said, in fact my symptoms were consistent with flu, but whether or not it was actually H1N1 would be nearly impossible to say at this point, although not out of the realm of possibility.
According to the CDC, like seasonal flu, symptoms of swine flu infections can include:
fever, which is usually high, but unlike seasonal flu, is sometimes absent (check)
cough (non-stop check)
runny nose or stuffy nose (check) and (check)
sore throat (check)
body aches (check)
headache (check), (check), and (check again)
chills (nope - mostly I've been hot, with my fever starting out at 101 for a few days and then remaining around 99-99.9 for the rest of the time)
fatigue or tiredness, which can be extreme (check)
diarrhea and vomiting, sometimes, but more commonly seen than with seasonal flu (um, check)
But then get this...
Serious swine flu symptoms include:
Fast breathing or trouble breathing (check)
Bluish or gray skin color (nope - at least people were kind and didn't tell me)
Not drinking enough fluids (nope)
Severe or persistent vomiting (nope)
Not waking up or not interacting (nope - except I always wanted to be sleeping)
Being so irritable that the child does not want to be held (nope - I like being held)
Flu-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough (um, can I say CHECK!?!)
The last one is what really got me. I was SO getting better during Week 3, and then wham it returned with a fever and my cough got worse. Of course, I would have had to be tested in the thick of the illness. He said that since he first saw me, he's had several patients who have come in with the flu, and my symptoms were the same. Strange.
Who knows, but it was pretty bad for awhile there. I'm not claiming swine flu. No way. But I still have an on and off low-grade fever and am very easily fatigued. I don't think I've ever been consistently sick for this length of time. It's been about five weeks. Ugh. But I'm back to work, and overall, I feel I'm definitely on the upswing. Or at least that's why I'm telling myself. You get what you focus on, right?
So there you go. More than you wanted to know about my health. :)