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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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What causes sudden onset of chills and headache?

Answered by
Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1978

Answered : 6704 Questions

Posted on Mon, 6 Jun 2016 in General Health
Question: Sudden onset of chills last night with increasingly painful headache. Joint paint in all joints and stiff neck(Neck is always stiff, have arthritis) This am temperature of 99.4. Viral or bacterial? I am scheduled to go on vacation tomorrow. Can I do that?
Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 49 minutes later
Brief answer....seems to be viral infection
Detailed answer...
Thanks for the query.
I have read your query and understand your concern.
Going by your symptoms,it appears to be a viral infection but the fact is that it is very difficult to differentiate between viral or bacterial or may be even malaria at the onset because symptoms in all these cases mimic each other.
Way to go ahead is that let us treat it considering it to be viral.
Just take paracetamol every 4-6 hours and wait and watch for next 3-4 days.
In case fever doesn't go away or if the intensity increases even after 72 hours,then you would need to consult a doctor for examination and relevant investigations to find the exact cause.
Now the question is of going on vacation.
In case you are going to a place where you can get medical support,then go ahead with it but if you are going to a far flung place,then it would be better to postpone your trip.
I hope it helps,however you are most welcome to revert to me for any further query.
Best of luck

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Yogesh D
Follow up: Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 46 minutes later
How likely is malaria since I live in New York?
Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 9 minutes later
Almost all the cases reported in new York each year are acquired in foreign countries.
Only very few locally acquired  cases have been reported on long islands and in queens.
So if you have not travelled to any country where malaria is prevalent,then the chances of malaria are very very less.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Deepak

The User accepted the expert's answer

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