The Testing Came Back And Evidently I Did Get Pontiac Fever at DomainFest

Feb 26 2011

Update: It turns out I am giving bad information here.  I was DIAGNOSED with Pontiac Fever.  It turns out there isn’t really a test for Pontiac Fever and it’s more of a diagnosis than a test result.  I tested negative for legionella and influenza (the forms they test for) and it was a reasonable diagnosis to put it in the Pontiac Fever area. It doesn’t mean I didn’t have it , but there is a heck of a difference between Legionnaire’s disease and Pontiac Fever.  There has not been one positive return of legionella from anyone.  Not one.  While we most certainly got something,  it looks like they were looking at the wrong disease.  I apologize for putting out bad or misleading information.

Last week I decided to quit talking about the “Playboy Flu”.  It had run its course and life moves on. I got my test like the LA County Health department asked and forgot about it.  But this morning I had a run with my friend/my doctor and he had a little “by the way” while we were running.  I officially had Pontiac Fever.

Pontiac Fever is caused by the same bacterium as Legionnaires Disease but produces a milder respiratory illness without pneumonia that resembles the flu.  Tests take a week to ten days to come back and although there are quick test, (which came back negative for Legionnaires Disease) I had to wait to get my results.  Even last week I wasn’t quite the same.  I went skiing, ran 45 miles, all things I do regularly but I had to go to bed 2 hours earlier every night to be able to do them and everything I did for the last two weeks took twice as much effort.  My body was just not the same.  Yesterday I officially announced I was back to being 100 percent.  It was the first day I felt 100% in 3 weeks and and today I ran 18 miles at a 7:45 pace and feel great.  All signs I’ve kicked it.  But I’m still pissed.

Here’s what upsets me.  Now I am a very anti legal action kind of guy.  I am also a self responsibility guy. I think too many people blame others for their misfortune and want to be compensated for poor decisions or overcompensated for loss.  People that break their leg skiing and sue the lodge piss me off. The knew the dangers of skiing and that tree was there long before they came to ski.  But in this situation this is the last thing I expected.  In a million years I never would have thought I would be subjected to an air born bacteria. I had never even heard of legionella until all of this. But it kicked my butt and there was nothing I could do to avoid it other than not attending the conference events.

I haven’t missed a day of work in 15 years.  You’ve heard me mention several times that my health is a very important to me.  To miss work upsets me. Combine that with the fact that I had taken the week off to go to the conference and missing those days really set me back.  Now the real kicker.  The whole thing pissed off my wife. Her husband leaves for a week, leaving her with all the duties, comes home and is incapacitated.  Add in the fact that the cause of it was most likely the Playboy Mansion and she’s not real sympathetic. You would think 103.5 fever would be enough to change that sentiment.  Although the sympathy never did come, she finally admits it wasn’t my fault.  If I hadn’t been subjected to this bacteria I would have come home tired but not sick.    My friends all knew something was wrong because instead of leading the runs, I was finishing way behind. Thankfully today proved I’m completely over it.

I have to admit, I have no idea how something like this can be prevented.  I just hope it can.  There’s got to be something you can do to ensure that 150 people don’t get sick simply by attending an event.  I don’t blame Oversee but I do think one of the host locations owes me something.  Even if it’s an apology.  I say host locations because it’s obvious this came through a ventilation system, fog machine, or something that puts out condensation. When they do find the cause I would like to hear exactly the measures they are going to take to prevent this from happening again.  Everyone gets the flu but it take special conditions to get Pontiac fever.  If it turns out to be the Playboy Mansion I think it would be kind of them to have me and my wife back for a celebrity party and prove to me that everything is OK.  As long as it’s not a Charlie Sheen party.

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Outsmarting the Dumb, Outworking the Smart

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  1. Jamie

    Glad to hear you are back to 100% Shane! I don’t know if they make one or not but a fog machine filter sounds like a product that is needed.

  2. tricolorro

    “If it turns out to be the Playboy Mansion I think it would be kind of them to have me and my wife back for a celebrity party…”

    Are you sure wives are allowed in?


    1. Post author

      Its funny because everyone likes to think things are more than they are, but in this case it turned out to be true. I just hope my daughter is a musical genius 🙂

  3. Sharon Hayes

    Glad to hear you got your results. I’m still waiting on mine. I am still sick. Last night was the first night I was able to sleep through the night but the tiredness, coughing etc are still there 🙁 I agree that “something” should be done. I lost 1 week of work 100% and been working at 50% capacity since then. I had to cancel my trip to Rocky Mountain Denver conference (I was a speaker). I also had to pay out of pocket for visit to clinic, chest xrays etc. All in all, several thousand of dollars lost. I’ve had surgery where I was back at work the same day so this was a huge deal for me.

  4. Sharon Hayes

    Thanks, Shane. I didn’t mean to sound like a whiner/shit stirrer either. I’m just frustrated as I’m sure you can understand. Irony: I need a good workout for the stress with this but not much I can do right now (have asthma/low blood pressure and even walking I feel lightheaded right now).

  5. Frank Michlick

    Apparently my test results will take at least another month, plus I’ve been asked to do more tests and will have another x-ray of my lungs since it looked like an onset of pneumonia what I had.

    @Sharon: Did you get antibiotics at all? That’s really what helped me over the hump, even though it took a long time. Hope you get better soon.

  6. Sharon Hayes

    Frank, wow that is a long time for the results. I had tests done the Friday before last then more last Wednesday. Will need to get retested in 2 weeks. These tests are San Diego health/CDC. I had gone on my own the Wednesday after the conference to urgent care at a clinic here. Had chest xrays done (which were clear). I was given a Z-pack and a couple of other prescriptions. I saw a huge improvement in the 24 hours after where I was able to get out of bed and not sleep 16-18 hrs a day. But since then, it’s been baby steps each day as far as progress and more like 3 steps forward, 1 step back. Last night was first time I went out since being sick that wasn’t a necessity!

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