Lets talk about by far the worst virus I’ve ever experienced.
About 3-4 days after traveling on an airplane, my daughter broke with a horrific fever. I had no idea what was going on. I ended up taking her to the emergency room where they told me she either had a viral infection in her throat or it was going to turn out to be hand, foot, and mouth disease. Well, unluckily for us, it was.
24 hours later her fever broke and the spots started appearing. By that time she was acting completely fine. We travelled back home and almost the minute we pulled into the driveway, I started feeling “off.”
I woke up the next day unable to move my body. I was in so much pain that I could hardly bend my joints. I took my temperature and sure enough, 103.5. I knew then I had contracted it but wanted to make a doctors appointment just to be sure since I didn’t have any spots just yet.
They tested me for a few things before agreeing that it was probably going to turn out to be the dreaded Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease. My doctor had told me that it was really rare for adults to catch it but definitely not impossible. I was just that lucky.
My husband was off work that day so I got to sleep pretty much the entire day away. I thought when I woke up I would be feeling much better but I felt 10 x worse than I did before. It was the worst body pain I’ve ever felt in my entire life, a horrible headache, a really high fever, chills, and nausea. Like my daughter, about 24 hours later, my fever broke. I thought, “YES! I’ll be all rainbows and sunshine like she was.” Nope. The rash started.
Apparently in children the rash isn’t painful but in adults it’s incredibly painful and even more itchy. I seriously contemplated cutting my own hands off they burned so badly. Nothing was even coming close to touching the pain. For two straight nights the only way I could sleep is if I was holding onto ice packs. As soon as the ice packs melted, I was awake and in horrific pain again. I think I got a total of 4 hours of sleep in those two days. I was never so miserable in my life.
The rash doesn’t only stay on your hands and your feet either like it usually does with children. Mine decided it would be a good idea to creep all the way up my right arm. Luckily, that part didn’t itch as badly but it still was quite uncomfortable.
So, now here I am writing this post 3 weeks later. I’m now dealing with the final step of this virus, which is the peeling and nails falling off. Yup, you read that right. There is a good chance that I will end up loosing some fingernails and toenails. Half the skin on my thumb is currently peeling off. I feel like a leper.
I wouldn’t wish this virus on my worst enemy.
So to sum it up for everyone; this is what I learned about Adult Hand Foot Mouth:
- It starts out with a high fever and body aches that closely resembles the flu.
- Once your fever breaks, your body breaks out in a rash.
- That rash is going to be horribly painful and itchy. Ice packs are the only thing that will help you. I couldn’t even sleep when on a high dose of sleep drugs and pain medications.
- Your skin will peel and your nails might fall off.
- You’re going to look awful for a while.
- There is really not much you can do to prevent it except washing your hands really well and avoiding public areas.
- If you’ve had it as a child, you’re less likely to contract it again as an adult.
- They need to come up with a vaccine for this crap.
- It’ll all be over in a short 6-8 weeks. URGH.