Meningitis Now
4,304 members1,424 posts

14 days and counting with VM

Hi spouse 15 days with VM, no fever now but severe headaches off and on. In bed 24 /7, very tired and lethargic, no appetite. Was diagnosed via lumbar puncture. I have read lots of literature, and keep seeing 7 - 10 days for illness to pass. Two weeks now and not even close. Would love comments and info. from those with similar disease and recover time, after effects etc. Thanks so much Jergen.

8 Replies

Hi Jergen,Sorry to hear about your wife getting VM.This is a long recovery for the majority of people and unfortunately the GP's seem to know very little.

It is early days for her and yes she will have headaches and feel exhausted for quite a while.I was diagnosed in June this year and was in hospital for a week.When home I spend the first couple of weeks on the couch dozing,pottering a little,resting again and I had to learn to pace myself.I suffered daily headaches and nausea,lethargy,anxiety and very low mood.These are things I have never experienced before as I am a fit energetic 58yr old.

I had to accept that pushing myself did not work and I had to learn to listen to my body.I did not work for 4 months as I felt too unwell.

If I did too much I would have a relapse with severe headache and vomiting.

This is a severe illness...the after effects linger for ages.This website was invaluable as I felt less of a fraud when I saw I was not alone.

I am just recovered now and feeling almost well but still make sure I go to bed early and do not overdo it.

She will recover fully but don't expect it in 7-10 days.......6 months is more typical.


Caroline, thanks so much for your reply. Very gratifying to hear of your successful recovery and return to good health. Yes, we are in it for the long haul, but stories such as yours give us great hope! Many thanks. Jay


I think that maybe what the literature is explaining is that the viral meningitis 'infection' usually resolves in 7-14 days but that's not the symptoms/after effects. The recovery from VM can vary from person to person and some recovery fully in a couple of months whereas for others it can be much longer. Unfortunately the medical profession still tend to be of the opinion that VM is no worse than flu! How wrong they are and most the people still on here that have had VM is evidence to that it can have a long recovery period and for some full recovery doesn't happen and they are left with some long term after effects.


Can't thank you all enough for taking the time to respond to my inquiry. This hit unexpectedly, suddenly, and hard. Still trying to comprehend what is going on. Am hungry for any and all info members care to share, from treatment, ideas, doctors, time frame, etc. Every day I try to educate myself a little more. Don't think I will ever grasp the totality of this disease, but every little bit of info. you can share certainly helps. I want my old Joey back. Jay


Hi Jergen, Everyone has a diff recovery time. I'm 3 yrs past VM, and if I push to much- I have relapsed! Take this illness very serious . Sleep, Reducing stress levels, a healthy diet & exercise are paramount in managing this disease. My nervous system has been forever compromised, & although I'm healthy now, I work every day at staying that way. Be patient with your spouse, reason being that no one understands this disease like the afflicted themselves. I do not rely on meds, but I do get chiropractic care monthly! Hope this helps , will keep you in my prayers!!


I'm over 4 years in and I still get headaches that I never got before. They are more manageable now,but I'm not the man I used to be.I contracted VM when I was 55 and used to work 70 hours a week for 30 years. Now I try to work 20 hours per week and I get tired easily. I was diagnosed with Chronic Meningitis and they say that the Brain can take up to 15 years to heal properly.I'm not saying it will be like this for you,every case is different. I hear a lot of people bounce back a lot sooner,I hope this is your case. i just wanted you to see the other side and have patience with your recovery !!


Evening jergen.

Firstly, your wife has the most important tool in recovery and that is a supportive spouse!

My story is very similar to your wife and my recovery also sounds the same except I am now 6wks post diagnosis. What you are describing seems very normal from the research I have done.

A little hope......this week for the first time I have been able to spend more than an hr or two out of bed and take some control over my kids again. Things will get better.

The best advice I was given is that whilst the virus is gone within 7-10 days, the after effects are caused by swelling around the brain. The length of time this takes to go down differs. So treat this like a brain injury. If you had been in a bad RTA no one would expect you to be back to normal after a month.

I have a friend would is a nutritional therapist. She is looking into treating me via supplements and diet so I will let you know what she recommends. For now she suggested adding protein powder to soups and smoothies so at least you have maximum nutrient in the small amount that stays down. Magnesium is good for the nervous system and black seed oil has multiple benefits in treating vm symptoms.

Personally I find that over stimulation is the worst. Light and sound are dreadful so watching a tv program makes me feel dreadful. Maybe reduce sounds and light around the house as much as possible.

All just my experiences and everyone's recovery will be different. I hope your wife feels a bit better soon.



I too am 14 days out of VM. Still off work and have no energy to walk to kitchen. Some days I don't even get dressed. My blood pressure keeps dropping low and adjusting medications. And of course the severe headaches. I've had headaches for 20 years so was hard to decide to go to hospital, but something just didn't seem right. My son-in-law brother now has BM and was diagnosed 3 days after I got home. I was in contact with my son-in-law and he was around his brother. Now my grandson who is 22 was diagnosed with VM but different hospital didn't admit him. Sent him home and told to take Tylenol. So I'm really worried about him. I hope he doesn't get worse. Hope this helps someone.


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