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What complications are possible with an Epstein-Barr infection?

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Quick Answer

The complications of an Epstein-Barr infection include fatigue, fever, a puffed-up throat, swollen lymph nodes in the neck and a rash, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More serious complications include dehydration, difficulty breathing and pains on the left side of the stomach, according to WebMD.

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Full Answer

Additional symptoms of an Epstein-Barr infection, also referred to as human herpesvirus 4, or EBV, are a swollen liver and an augmented spleen. EBV can lead to infectious mononucleosis, commonly known as "the kissing disease," according the WebMD. A doctor typically checks for white patches on the tonsils, which is an indication of mono.

Although complications are uncommon, some people might feel tired for several weeks and months. Those who have weakened immune systems are more likely to develop complications with the Epstein-Barr virus if it has reactivated after becoming inactive in the body from a previous case, according to the CDC. Overall weakness, sore muscles and lack of appetite also may be present, explains WebMD. Quick, sharp pains on the left side of the stomach could indicate problems with the spleen.

Extended health complications arise when a person spreads the virus for weeks before they ever know they are infected, according to the CDC.

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