My throat was sore, I had nausea, my lymph nodes were swollen, and I had a fever. I was misdiagnosed with mono.
I was not the only victim of misdiagnosis by McKinley Health Center. Fellow freshman, Jason McGrath and Colin Knipe, were also diagnosed with mononucleosis.
Knipe was told he had mono, pale skin, and appeared weak. Then, when he was able to go home, his doctor told him that it was just bronchitis.
“I was in pain all over; I felt like my throat was going to close up and I could not even move,” said Knipe.
McGrath went to the hospital at home, and his mono test was also negative. If McKinley continues to misdiagnose a disease as simple as mono, it makes me wonder if they will be able to diagnose a more serious disease properly.
“I might have actually had mono,” said McGrath, “but the hospital at home diagnosed me with degenerative disk disease.” Degenerative disk disease is a serious back problem that causes acute back pain.
Mononucleosis is an extremely common and painful disease caused by the Epstein-Barr Virus. It is rarely misdiagnosed when a doctor has proper resources to complete a EBV panel, but McKinley Health Center continues to misdiagnose the virus.
I was sent down to the basement lab of McKinley to get blood work done. I later got a call from a nurse and she broke the news that I had mono.
I never thought I would end up in Carle Hospital a couple weeks later. I took the typical precautions for mono and slept as much as I could, but my symptoms continued to get worse.
I went back to McKinley and they said I should just keep doing what I was doing, but the next day I ended up in the hospital with a 103.3 fever, a differentiating heart rate, weakness, and a lack of desire to do anything.
A downward spiral of tests, blood work, and three nights in the intensive care unit at Carle Hospital began. They tested for everything, including mono, but it was not present. I saw an infectious disease specialist, a cardiac specialist, and every other specialist Carle had to offer.
I also went to multiple doctors at home, but to no avail.
Each doctor had a different theory. It changed from mono to pneumonia to a heart disease to cancer and then, ‘yeah, you’ll be okay in a week or two, just give it some time.’
They were unable to diagnose me with anything, but they were able to conclude that I did not have mononucleosis.
After nearly three weeks of searching for an answer, my condition began to improve. There was never a clinical diagnosis, and the most accurate answer was, “I don’t know what you have, but you have something.”
I do not feel comfortable going to McKinley after finding out how much they missed in their diagnoses between myself and my peers. Everyone at McKinley is incredibly nice, but it is ridiculous that a college health center is not able to cater to the simple needs of its students.
McKinley tries to rush everything as they cater to majority of the student body. The doctors and lab technicians should really be more careful and thorough. It is not realistic for them to be perfect, but they should be pretty close.