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Author Topic: Rabies & the Flu  (Read 177 times)

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Offline Xirahii

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Rabies & the Flu
« on: December 27, 2013, 09:06:16 PM »
Six months ago in June, when I got bit by a raccoon that was being unusually "dopey" in its behavior, I posted my concerns elsewhere (not on this site) but was too embarrassed to check up on the replies because I had visited my doctor within that time and he said that, because there were no visible bite marks (and based on other information I'd given him), there was no need to get a booster.  My anxiety was very stubborn, but somehow I got over it... ._.

I thought that the raccoon had "missed" his bite, though.  He lunged for my foot but I only felt something on one of my toes (I was wearing sandals) and while I felt what I thought was a tooth or a claw, it was a very dull feeling and not sharp at all.  When he walked off I knelt down and studied the area  (and I mean I glued my eyes to my foot  :P ) immediately thereafter.  No blood, no marks, and not even a tint of red on the skin.  When I got home I doused the area--even the underside of my foot--with rubbing alcohol just to make sure there were no "invisible cuts" I wasn't seeing.  Nothing stung, which made me believe that there was no skin punctured (and therefore no rabies to worry about).  After that I sanitized myself.

Three days ago I started coming down with something.  It started off like the usual colds I end up getting, with a sore throat that fades as soon as stuffy/runny noses, coughing and all that not-so-fun stuff comes in.  But even though the symptoms were unusually mild compared to the other bugs I've gotten, it left me feeling aches, pains and generally like I got smacked five times over by a bus.  I've even got pretty noticeable muscle fatigue and aching all around which is also something colds never give me, so I went to the doctor's today to get a flu test which came back negative.  I'd feel pretty glad about that but for two reasons --

1. Unfortunately, down here in Texas (I hope you don't imagine me talking in a western accent now haha) near Houston, there is an outbreak of a "mysterious illness" that begins like the flu but once you begin feeling better (which I kind of am), hits you with acute pneumonia which everyone thus far has had to go into the ICU for.  Not many doctors are able to identify it yet.  I'd noticed a weird pattern of patients going into the office with complaints, getting sent home, and then going to the ER a day or two later.

2. It REALLY feels like the flu unless I've just been hit by a vicious cold... But then my mind goes back to the rabies incident (especially because it supposedly starts off with flu-like symptoms).  Because it set my anxiety off so much at the time, I ended up doing a LOT of research as to the symptoms and how long it takes for rabies to set in depending on the bite location.  Since it was basically on my toe (the farthest away from the brain you can get), I'd given a few months of leeway for it to travel until I allowed myself to "let it go."  The side of the toe the bite was on has been itching kind of, but admittedly that was only after my brain went "Hey, remember you were bitten there!" and now it's probably only itching because of the irritation I'd given it from scratching at it.  I can't sleep at night no matter how heavy my eyes are or how much I try, which I end up attributing to insomnia which also is a symptom of rabies (and something I don't have otherwise).  I take the muscle fatigue/sudden onsets of limb stiffness I feel and attribute that to my limbs gradually going out...

... Basically this is a very bad time to get sick.  If it's not the aforementioned "mysterious illness", then it's rabies; if it's not rabies, then it's the aforementioned "mysterious illness"... at least until I'm in good health again.  Which is why I want to sleep so much, to get my body working on shoving this garbage out of me, but stress is keeping me awake and it feels like this is taking forever to get over. x_x I'm generally a very logical thinker, but when it comes to illnesses that threaten my mortality not even logic is too reassuring and I keep insisting that the doctors are missing something crucial.  It's a mess..
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Online Cuchculan

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Re: Rabies & the Flu
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2013, 06:02:26 AM »
Sounds like a flu to me. I know here in Ireland we have no got that mysterious illness you mentioned. But if I get the flu, and I had it just before Christmas, I get a sore throat to begin with. It clears up within a day and then the flu symptoms hit me big time. I always know when I am coming down with the flu. If that sore throat does not appear I know it is not the flu. Now I am sure you have read up on rabies. I am not sitting here thinking you didn't jump on the net and not do a bit of reading on the subject. Common thing to do. No doubt a few symptoms of the flu might overlap with a few symptoms of rabies. Thus the mind begins to wonder. You begin to panic. I think I would be trusting my doctor/ If he saw no signs of anything bad way back when, then I would accept that. I would give it a day or two. See how you are feeling. You did say that everybody who gets this mysterious illness ends up in hospital anyway. If it is that we know where you will probably end up. They will probably do a few tests on you. You can explain the rabies fear to them again. But I am sure in a week or two, if it is the flu, you will be back to yourself again.
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The Lovable Irish Rogue

Online Lindsay2427

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Re: Rabies & the Flu
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2013, 01:08:55 PM »
I have the flu right now! It's terrible. Fever, muscle and joint pain, cough, runny nose, headache, weakness! I would say its flu or something else viral. Are you running a temp? Only not all flu tests come back positive even if it is the flu. It's going around where I live like crazy.
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Offline Xirahii

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Re: Rabies & the Flu
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2013, 04:06:11 PM »
Thanks for the replies... I really appreciate it.  :sick0002:

I've kinda settled with taking it "one day at a time."  It's about the only thing I can really do right now besides drink a whole bunch of OJ and keep up with medications.  It just really is an inconvenient time to get sick with the "mysterious illness" running around and the rabies incident a while back.  Honestly, if I didn't feel as exhausted as I do, I would say I feel adequate enough, but I've never had ANY virus hit me this hard and that's what catches me off-guard.  I really hate illnesses that have overlapping symptoms because you can never really tell what's what, then.  And then when anxiety kicks in, that just adds another factor.  But  I took Nyquil last night, which helped me catch a good 8 hours of sleep I've been deprived on.  My sore throat's pretty much gone, my congestion is fading and the runny nose just came and went in a day, but I still feel as wiped out as I did when I first came down with this bug.  Despite the sleep/rest that I get, everything feels so "foggy" and dreamlike.

But I guess there are just so many viruses that're in the air it's hard for the doctors to keep track of all of them.

As for the rabies... Well, I guess this all would count as the "clinical symptoms" kicking in, in which case I think I can relax either after this strange bug passes hopefully along with the other symptoms or after 10 days or so, when I should either be sick beyond belief or in the ER.  At least then I can eliminate rabies and mark it off as an awful flu bug.

I hope you feel better soon, Lindsay.  =( Flus are never fun.  I actually have not been getting a fever with whatever I have.  So far my symptoms have just been the occasional muscle/joint pain and stiffness, dry coughs, stuffy/runny nose, and this really bad exhaustion.

 
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Offline Xirahii

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Re: Rabies & the Flu
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2013, 02:27:10 AM »
7 days (a week) has passed now, I think... The overwhelming exhaustion and muscle fatigue that's been bothering me the most has gone away for the most part, thankfully, but now for a day so far there's this tightness/lumpy feeling in my throat that makes eating (and sometimes drinking) a little unpleasant but I guess I'm giving myself the benefit of the doubt and attributing that to my being on-edge, because that's pretty much it besides the mild itchiness still near the toe that was bitten...  Still no sign of fever.  I suppose there's some reassurance there, though... mostly the fact that it isn't the mysterious illness that's been going around and putting people in the ER.

There's still that image in my mind that I'm trying to hammer into my senses.  No bite marks, no blood, no swollen areas... so no rabies -- is what I would like to think.  It would be a very unusual case if it actually were positive, right? :/ I wish the brain weren't so convincing in manifesting what just could be "ghost symptoms"!  I may just go get the rabies boosters anyway (assuming I still have time to and this is just a harmless flu)... The possible side-effects the shots may give, no matter how inconvenient, I think would be MORE than worth it if it meant not having to stress about it all the time even though the doctor suggested otherwise.
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Offline Houston

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Re: Rabies & the Flu
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2014, 06:11:56 AM »
Hey!  I'm in Houston.  How did it turn out, Xirahii?
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