Last week was spring break for my husband so we decided to take an overnight trip to Austin. Unfortunately, as soon as we got there Tate came down with a slight fever. We reigned in our SXSW schedule to accommodate our baby’s less than stellar mood. Fortunately, his fever broke over night and he seemed to be back to normal. It wasn’t until we got home that we noticed a rash developing on his face.
We realized what had Tate turning red and splotchy pretty quickly (because it was going around): Fifth disease.
Don’t know much about it? (I didn’t either!) Click through to read about symptoms and treatment. Apparently, it was named because it was counted among the top 5 childhood rash associated infections.
The symptoms include low-grade fever, headache, and mild cold-like symptoms. The initial symptoms pass and a rash appears a few days later. The rash usually starts on the cheeks and face. After a few days, the rash extends down to the trunk, arms, and legs. The rash of usually lasts 1 to 3 weeks.
The unfortunate thing is children are only contagious before the rash appears, making it hard to keep it from spreading.
I was wondering what I could do to treat the disease, and here is what I found on kidshealth.org
Fifth disease is caused by a virus, and it cannot be treated with antibiotics used to treat bacterial infections. Although antiviral medicines do exist, none are currently available to treat fifth disease. In most cases, this is such a mild illness that no medicine is necessary.
Usually, kids with fifth disease feel fairly well and need little home treatment other than rest. After the fever and mild cold symptoms have passed, there may be little to treat except any discomfort from the rash itself.
Excess sun, heat and emotional stress can exacerbate the rash so it looks like we have a few more weeks of taking it easy around here!
Have any of your kids had Fifth disease?