Malaise is a generalized feeling of discomfort, illness, or lack of well-being. It can be associated with a disease. Malaise can be accompanied by a feeling of exhaustion, or of not having enough energy to accomplish usual activities.
Alternative Names: General ill feeling
Malaise is a nonspecific symptom that can occur with almost any significant infectious, metabolic (endocrine ), or systemic (throughout the body) disorder. The onset may be slow or rapid depending on the nature of the disease.
Fatigue accompanies malaise in many common diseases.
The following lists give examples of the diseases and conditions that can cause malaise.
ACUTE INFECTIOUS DISEASE
CHRONIC INFECTIOUS DISEASE
CONNECTIVE TISSUE DISEASE
ENDOCRINE or METABOLIC
- Dysthymia (a long-lasting depressed mood, less severe than depression)
- Anticonvulsant (antiseizure) medications
- Beta blockers (medications used to treat heart disease or high blood pressure)
- Psychiatric medications
- Treatments involving several medications
Significant symptoms require immediate attention from your health care provider.
Call your health care provider if:
- Malaise is accompanied by other symptoms indicating a significant illness.
- Malaise persists longer than one week, with or without other symptoms.
What to expect at your health care provider's office:
Your health care provider will perform a physical examination and ask questions such as:
- How long has this feeling lasted (weeks or months)?
- What other symptoms do you have?
- Is the malaise constant or episodic (comes and goes)?
- Can you complete your daily activities? If not, what limits you?
- Have you recently traveled?
- What medications are you on?
- What are your other medical problems?
- Do you use alcohol or other drugs?
If signs or symptoms of a significant illness are present, tests may be required to confirm the diagnosis. These may include various blood tests, x-rays, or other diagnostic tests.
|Review Date: 1/18/2007|
Reviewed By: Benjamin W. Van Voorhees, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.
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