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How do you experience colds?

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by Persimmon, Jun 10, 2015.

  1. Persimmon

    Persimmon Senior Member

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    @jonathanedwards has drawn attention to the apparent phenomena of some ME patients very rarely getting sick with the common cold, while others catch colds far more frequently than is normal.

    My question is whether people with ME experience colds differently to healthy people.

    Since contracting ME, my experience of colds involves:

    (1) An unusual and protracted prodrome, during which I typically assume its just a fluctuation of regular ME symptoms (ie "I must have overdone it and so am experiencing worse than usual sore throat, low/grade fever and light headedness").
    After maybe 5 days of this, I start to wonder if I've misinterpreted these symptoms, and whether a cold has started. There might be several days of not knowing which it is.
    Eventually it becomes obvious I have a cold.

    &

    (2) Lingering symptoms.
    My cold might "break" repeatedly, like multiple waves
    (ie I go through the stage of sneezing, running nose and watering eyes; then it dries up; then the fluids flow again; then it dries up again...)
    After that process, the whole thing dies down very gradually, with some symptoms (typically coughing and unusual sore throats) lingering for maybe 3-4 weeks.

    From start to finish, the process never takes less than a few weeks, and might last for 2 months.
     
  2. Gingergrrl

    Gingergrrl Senior Member

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    I have not had a cold or anything even resembling a cold in 2.5 years but have never been as sick from ME and newly joining the party MCAS as I am at present. Even though viral counts very high and NK functioning very low, I have had nothing that resembles a cold- only severe dysautonomia, tachycardia and low BP, shortness of breath, weakness, autoimmune stuff, mast cell and histamine chaos leading to hospitalization, and prolonged exposure to toxic black mold. I do not even remember what having a cold feels like!
     
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  3. sarah darwins

    sarah darwins I told you I was ill

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    I don't get them, at least not the usual symptoms. While everyone around me is coughing and sneezing, I'm the same as usual. Then, when they're all getting better, I fall into a long, bad and sustained crash, and usually take a few weeks to start feeling more 'normal' (relatively speaking). Same with sore throats and other routine bugs.

    I did get a regular cold last autumn — first one in 14 years — and I practically danced a jig (I'm getting better!). But maybe that was something to do with relocating across the Atlantic and meeting unfamiliar virus strains.

    This seems to intersect with the thread that @SunMoonsStars started yesterday: http://forums.phoenixrising.me/inde...ning-or-chronically-activated-immunity.37988/
     
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  4. ahmo

    ahmo Senior Member

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    No colds, flu probably twice or 3 times in my life. I think I had colds as a child, but can't confirm.
     
  5. Mogwai

    Mogwai

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    Much the same as Sarah above - I get a worsening of my usual ME symptoms when colds/the flu/bugs do the rounds.

    Most recently my brother got a nasty chest infection - he was coughing up a storm and needed antibiotics.

    I'm just getting over it now - with immense brain fog being at the forefront of my worsened symptoms - but there was no coughing, no runny nose, and no sore throat.

    I like to think I'm invincible to the ailments of the common folk...
     
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  6. sarah darwins

    sarah darwins I told you I was ill

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    How do I like that twice? :thumbsup::D
     
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  7. slysaint

    slysaint Senior Member

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    I haven't had a cold in 14 years(since I was diagnosed with ME). I used to catch any bug that was going around. At first I thought it was done to lack of social contact, I just wasn't being exposed to sick people as when I was at work. But over the last few years I've actually made a point of being in contact with people who have colds and nothing happened, not like the colds I used to get(bunged up, streaming nose etc). But I have had several chest infections.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2015
  8. Jenny

    Jenny Senior Member

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    I 've been through periods of never getting colds, but I do get them now.

    I always know when I'm coming down with a cold because the day before the cold symptoms start I feel 100% well for about 12 hours!

    But then much worse, and the cold is much worse than what everyone around me has.
     
  9. Hell...Hath...No...Fury..

    Hell...Hath...No...Fury.. Senior Member

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    I hardly ever get real colds anymore in the last 17 years. If i do get a real cold, it completely floors me and takes around a month to recover from after the cold has finished.

    But i do get ME colds, that aren't a cold. Impossible to know the difference as the symptoms are identical, (wooly head, stuffed and pouring nose, sore throat etc) the only clue being its the first day of a big crash and the first day of a week long PEM. Usually the cold symptoms just vanish into thin air by the next day. Much better than a real cold.
     
  10. JamBob

    JamBob Senior Member

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    Constantly!!! I had 19 colds last year and 20 colds the year before. They often go into my chest and then I get asthma, bronchitis and sometimes pleurisy. This year I've only had 7 colds since January so I'm doing a little better. Colds are the bane of my life.

    I'd love to know why I keep getting colds as I don't get out very much. I also have T1 Diabetes (which can mess with your immune system), steroid dependency, thyroid disease and immunology tests show abnormally low NK Cell counts.
     
  11. meadowlark

    meadowlark Senior Member

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    I was diagnosed in 2000, and didn't catch a cold for thirteen years. No matter how bad a cold was going around, I was immune to it. Then, in November of 2013, I caught a sinus flu that was going around. No, let me amend that. I caught it BAD. It featured an intense head cold and other cold-ish symptoms--feverishness, fever, aches and pains, coughing, blurry visions, tinitus. (I'm sure it was flu because it also featured some digestive catastrophes.) Trouble is, this sinus flu never left. I no longer have the head cold part, but I have the sensation of terrible pressure in my head, throat pain, blurry vision and a very fierce ringing in my ears. (No, I don't have allergies.)

    I hate the throat pain but can live with it. Unfortunately the blurry vision (even with prescription eye drops) is so bad that I can't read for several hours a day, and the ringing in my ears sounds like an approaching army--shrieks, rumbles, whistles and roars. I often don't hear the phone or the t.v., and constantly ask people to repeat themselves. I have even woken up from a sleep because the noise in my head is so revved up. At this point my doctor (a new one, who keeps her expression carefully blank when ME/CFS comes up) seems to think I am the worst somatic case she has ever seen.

    Well, I do feel like I'm going mad. My brain feels like it is spending all its time addressing these terrible sounds, and so it engages only partly with the world beyond.

    I don't imagine anyone can give me anything to stop whatever's going on. God knows no prescriptions or over-the-counter solutions help. But I would like to pay for a histamine test, as that might at least prove to my doctor that things are not exactly as they should be.
     
  12. Apple

    Apple Senior Member

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    I seem get hit really, really hard for about 24-48 hours before recovering quickly with no major prolonged post viral fatigue. Which is strange considering my disease started as post viral fatigue.

    Meanwhile my mum gets much milder symptoms but hers can linger around for weeks.

    I've often wondered - who has the better immune system?
     
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  13. jimells

    jimells Senior Member

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    Wow, that's horrible. My tinnitus is quite tame in comparison.

    I haven't had a traditional "common cold" for six years. Twice I have had "micro colds" - I wake up with my nose running like a broken pipe and sneezing and what not. Then by noon it's completely gone like I just imagined the whole thing. Very, very strange.

    It's so strange that as a group we experience such a wide range. The commonality seems to be that most folks are at one extreme or the other.
     
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  14. Tammy

    Tammy Senior Member

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    Have had very few colds since CFS. (19 years). I remember my CFS specialist telling me that it will be a good sign when I start getting colds again. The few times I've had a cold.......my CFS symptoms seem better............I actually feel better despite the cold.:confused:
     
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  15. Snow Leopard

    Snow Leopard Hibernating

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    When I was mostly housebound, I would hardly ever catch things, when more active, I would catch most things going around (and I'd avoid people with the flu).

    @Persimmon 's description of the experience of cold-like viruses is exactly what I experience. Last year I had three waves of what felt like the same virus.
     
  16. erin

    erin Senior Member

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    I was devastated that my husband had nova virus. He was very sick last saturday, he is better since last night, improving rapidly. I don't know where he got it from, we were out saturday and had fish lunch. I am fine had no symptoms at all. He also had a bad cold in October, well everyone around me had it. But I was fine.

    I was diagnosed 2008, I was sick before 2004 - 5 ish. It took so long to be diagnosed. Those 4 years I had every flu, virus under the sun and suffered 5 times longer than my husband or average anyone.

    Now 12 years on I don't catch anything like a flu or a virus. But I am generally pretty unwell. I don't understand anymore. My immune system works so excessively that does it attack my own body? e.g. My thyroid gland is almost disappearing...
     
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  17. belize44

    belize44 Senior Member

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    This is something that occurs with me, and I have often wondered the same thing. I can get into a severe flare up, but do not seem to catch colds and flu. I also have autoimmune issues.
     
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  18. Snow Leopard

    Snow Leopard Hibernating

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    Still catching colds as frequently as everyone else. The damned things keep recurring 3-4 times too.
     
  19. roller

    roller wiggle jiggle

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    im in the 3rd flu this year.
    nobody else around had anything like that.

    the flu is not the beginning of the nightmare, but its part of the overture.

    it comes from inside.
     
  20. roller

    roller wiggle jiggle

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    a many things cause flu-like symptoms.
    it doesnt even have to be a virus.
     

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