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Roseola, also called exanthem subitum, is a viral infection that causes skin eruptions. It usually occurs in the spring or fall and mostly in infants and toddlers, from 6 months to 2 years of age.


The illness usually develops 5 to 15 days following contact with the virus.


Roseola starts with a high fever (over 39.5°C), which appears abruptly, with no apparent cause, and persists for 3 to 7 days. Most children are not very sick during the fever stage. Thereafter, a rash of small pinkish-red spots develops on the face, neck, arms and legs. The eruption usually lasts 1 to 3 days and is usually not itchy.


Roseola is spread through contact with saliva or respiratory secretions of an infected person and by secretion droplets suspended in the air.


There is no specific treatment. The child should rest and drink plenty of fluids. Medication may also be used to reduce fever. Consult your pharmacist.

Remember that washing your hands frequently is a simple measure that significantly reduces the risk of transmitting most contagious diseases!

For more information :

Canadian Paediatric Society

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