Roseola: a childhood illness I’d never heard of

In Health, Kids, Who knew?! on July 27, 2009 at 5:44 am

But am now decidedly in the “been there, done that” category.

Roseola is a viral infection caused by one of the herpes viruses (6 and 7, to be exact). It’s also known as “Sixth disease” because it’s the sixth viral infection discovered to affect children.

Funny thing about roseola: you won’t know that it’s what’s wrong with your kid until it’s practically over. Kiddo will have 3-5 days of high-ish (and if you’re a nervous nellie like me, alarming) fever (101-105F, easily controlled by ibuprofen or acetaminophen) then… miraculously they will get better… and have a TERRIBLE looking rash. The rash doesn’t seem to bother them, though, as it’s not itchy. It’ll start on the tummy/back and spread to the arms and legs, but should probably go away within one to two days. You might see other virus-y type symptoms as well during the fever period: vomiting, diarrhea, clear snot, etc., but not always.

Incubation time is 9-10 days, so think back… yep, that visit to the playground and that pale, snotty kid that rubbed his snot all over the firepole right before yours went down probably did give your kid something. Your kid will have been contagious since a couple of days before the fever started until the rash resolves.

What? You’re like me and want a pic of this rash? Lucky for you, I’ve done the work:

Pic of Roseola rash

And read more on WebMD

*am not a Doctor, just a mom. Please be responsible.


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