Friday, April 29, 2005

Fifth Disease

My son has come down with Fifth Disease. He came home Wednesday with a red splotch on his cheek. I chalked it up to him being a kid and walking into something. I dropped in on his kindergarten class Thursday and his teacher mentioned the red splotch. Apparently some triplets who are in the school (each in a different kindergarten class, one in Robert's) had come down with it. She asked if Robert had a rash. I said no. She explained a little about Fifth Disease and the triplets having had it recently. She was concerned that Robert might have it. I went home with the intent to look it up, but not overly worried.

I had my mom stay with my kids last night while I went to my spanish class. When I got home, my mom told me Robert had a rash all over his legs and back. By this morning it was on his arms too. He didn't feel bad, just itchy. So he went to school today.

Fifth disease is effectively a virus that causes a rash. It occurs primarily in kids, though adults can get it as well. It's highly contagious, but by the time the rash shows up they're not contagious any more. It appears to be like a cold (spread through coughing and such), then the red "slapped face" look. A day or so after that the rash shows. Whee.

Only thing you can do is help the itch with creams or benadryl and wait. It can be over in a couple of days or not for several months. I hope for his sake it only lasts a couple of days.

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