(Exanthem Subitum; Roseola Infantum)
DefinitionRoseola is an infection characterized by a sudden onset of high fever followed by a rash. The infection usually ends on its own without complications.
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CausesRoseola is usually caused by specific herpes viruses. These viruses are not the same as the herpes viruses that cause cold sores or genital herpes .
Risk FactorsRoseola is more common in children aged 6 months to 3 years (6-15 months is most common), and during the spring and fall months. Contact with an infected child is rarely reported.
SymptomsRoseola may cause:
- 103°F to 105°F
- Begins suddenlyand is not associated with other symptoms
- Lasts 3 days,sometimes a day or two longer
- Convulsions may occur in association with high fever in up to 5% to 10% of children
- A rash that develops 12-24 hours after the fever
- Appears on the chest and abdomen first
- May spread to arms, legs, neck, and face
- Lasts for a few hours to a few daysand does not itch
- Other symptoms or signs may include:
- Swelling of lymph nodes in the neck and behind the ears
- Poor appetite
- Upper respiratory tract infection symptoms that may occur before the fever
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