Skip to comments.Rash Has Officials Scratching Their Heads... (First Case Of Small Pox???)?
Posted on 11/30/2001 6:05:22 PM PST by The Magical Mischief TourEdited on 09/03/2002 4:49:36 AM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]
Follow the link due to posting restrictions... I posted this under Breaking News just incase. I appologize if it's jumping the gun. ...
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
Okay, then come Monday we have 200 plus kids in the hospital with small pox or some other funky virus can we nuke the camel whizz out of the entire middle east?
A month ago I took my 7-year-old to the pediatrician because she had a rash and low fever. Dr. was convinced she had fifths but I asked him to check her for strep because her best friend had strep. He was shocked when the test came back positive. He said it doesn't look like a strep rash/scarlet fever. I talked to the school nurse and she told me she had seen an epidemic of kids with rashes. I suggested she urge parents to test for strep because they need antibiotics.
The weird thing was my 11 year old got it from her sister weeks ago. Her rash went away but now it has come back this week. Maybe she has had fifths and strep?
I do remember though that they had to call in substitute teachers for several weeks for two of the teachers that were pregnant. It's as dangerous for a pregnant woman to be around fifth disease as it is to have her around measels. Bad news!
well that is a very slippery slope. If there is a real outbreak not telling the public in an effor not to panic them could well cause that outbreak to spread at a stage where it could have been contained had people known.
If Stachybotrys chartarum spores are released into the air, there is a potential for humans to develop symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, runny nose, irritated eyes or throat, skin rash, or diarrhea. There are a few reports in the scientific literature of improvement of symptoms when people left an area where SC (Croft, Johanning) or other molds (Auger) were found, or after moldy materials were removed from a dwelling or workplace.
Stachybotrys chartarum (SC) is a greenish black fungus that grows on material with a high cellulose and low nitrogen content, such as fiberboard, gypsum board, paper, dust, and lint, that becomes chronically moist or water damaged due to excessive humidity, water leaks, condensation, water infiltration, or flooding. No one knows how often this fungus is found since buildings are not routinely tested for its presence. However, one study in Southern California found it in 2.9% of 68 homes (Kozak). S. chartarum may (under specific environmental conditions) produce several toxic chemicals called mycotoxins. These chemicals are present on the spores and the small fungus fragments that are released into the air. Although spores and other parts of this fungus are usually trapped in a wet, slimy mass of fungal growth, many health officials are concerned that spores may become airborne when the fungus dies and dries up. Because S. chartarum spores are very small, some may be drawn into the lungs when airborne spores are inhaled.
Prevention of Mold in Dwellings: As part of routine building maintenance, buildings should be inspected for evidence of water damage and visible mold. Conditions causing mold (such as water leaks, condensation, infiltration, or flooding) should be corrected.
A child can have a strep throat and then it may go away but the child may develop rheumatic fever and even heart damage if it isn't treated in a timely fashion.
I spent four days in ICU a few years ago. My 2yr old daughter brought home Meningitus to me. She had a two day low grade fever. I had a $13,000.00 4 day ICU Hospital bill and many months of recovery.Thank God I had insurance!Dont let the terrorists win!Especially when they are not even trying !
It doesn't sound like these kids are sick, rather they just think their skin looks a bit different. My guess is things have gotten cold, they've cranked the furnace up at school, the humidity is dropping and everyone's skin is getting dried out. Stir in school phobia and routine teen hysteria and you've got an epidemic. I had a girl this age in yesterday, a safe distance from the Washington Post here in Iowa, with similar complaints. Objectively she was very unimpressive, just dry skin and a bit of keratosis pilaris (small uniform scaly bumps at hair follicles which are sometimes a bit red), which can be aggravated by dry skin. KP is very common but non-dermatologists possess great ignorance of it. It is generally ignored by everyone except hyper-observant (i.e. normal) kids.
I was having fun vomiting up 4 slices of pizza while I was trying to think; not a good idea.
What is "fifth disease?"
Fifth disease is a mild rash illness that occurs most commonly in children. The ill child typically has a "slapped-cheek" rash on the face and a lacy red rash on the trunk and limbs. Occasionally, the rash may itch. An ill child may have a low-grade fever, malaise, or a "cold" a few days before the rash breaks out. The child is usually not very ill, and the rash resolves in 7 to 10 days.
What causes fifth disease?
Fifth disease is caused by infection with human parvovirus B19. This virus infects only humans. Pet dogs or cats may be immunized against "parvovirus," but these are animal parvoviruses that do not infect humans. Therefore, a child cannot "catch" parvovirus from a pet dog or cat, and a pet cat or dog cannot catch human parvovirus B19 from an ill child.
Can adults get fifth disease?
Yes, they can. An adult who is not immune can be infected with parvovirus B19 and either have no symptoms or develop the typical rash of fifth disease, joint pain or swelling, or both. Usually, joints on both sides of the body are affected. The joints most frequently affected are the hands, wrists, and knees. The joint pain and swelling usually resolve in a week or two, but they may last several months. About 50% of adults, however, have been previously infected with parvovirus B19, have developed immunity to the virus, and cannot get fifth disease.
Is fifth disease contagious?
Yes. A person infected with parvovirus B19 is contagious during the early part of the illness, before the rash appears. By the time a child has the characteristic "slapped cheek" rash of fifth disease, for example, he or she is probably no longer contagious and may return to school or child care center. This contagious period is different than that for many other rash illnesses, such as measles, for which the child is contagious while he or she has the rash.
How does someone get infected with parvovirus B19?
Parvovirus B19 has been found in the respiratory secretions (e.g., saliva, sputum, or nasal mucus) of infected persons before the onset of rash, when they appear to "just have a cold." The virus is probably spread from person to person by direct contact with those secretions, such as sharing drinking cups or utensils. In a household, as many as 50% of susceptible persons exposed to a family member who has fifth disease may become infected. During school outbreaks, 10% to 60% of students may get fifth disease.
How soon after infection with parvovirus B19 does a person become ill?
A susceptible person usually becomes ill 4 to 14 days after being infected with the virus, but may become ill for as long as 20 days after infection.
Does everyone who is infected with parvovirus B19 become ill?
No. During outbreaks of fifth disease, about 20% of adults and children who are infected with parvovirus B19 do not develop any symptoms. Furthermore, other persons infected with the virus will have a non-specific illness that is not characteristic of fifth disease. Persons infected with the virus, however, do develop lasting immunity that protects them against infection in the future.
How is fifth disease diagnosed?
A physician can often diagnose fifth disease by seeing the typical rash during a physical examination. In cases in which it is important to confirm the diagnosis, a blood test may be done to look for antibodies to parvovirus. Antibodies are proteins produced by the immune system in response to parvovirus B19 and other germs. If immunoglobulin M (IgM) antibody to parvovirus B19 is detected, the test result suggests that the person has had a recent infection.
Is fifth disease serious?
Fifth disease is usually a mild illness that resolves on its own among children and adults who are otherwise healthy. Joint pain and swelling in adults usually resolve without long-term disability.
Parvovirus B19 infection may cause a serious illness in persons with sickle-cell disease or similar types of chronic anemia. In such persons, parvovirus B19 can cause an acute, severe anemia. The ill person may be pale, weak, and tired, and should see his or her physician for treatment. (The typical rash of fifth disease is rarely seen in these persons.) Once the infection is controlled, the anemia resolves. Furthermore, persons who have problems with their immune systems may also develop a chronic anemia with parvovirus B19 infection that requires medical treatment. People who have leukemia or cancer, who are born with immune deficiencies, who have received an organ transplant, or who have human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection are at risk for serious illness due to parvovirus B19 infection.
Occasionally, serious complications may develop from parvovirus B19 infection during pregnancy. For details, please see the CDC information sheet entitled, "Parvovirus B19 Infection and Pregnancy."
How are parvovirus B19 infections treated?
Treatment of symptoms such as fever, pain, or itching is usually all that is needed for fifth disease. Adults with joint pain and swelling may need to rest, restrict their activities, and take medicines such as aspirin or ibuprofen to relieve symptoms. The few people who have severe anemia caused by parvovirus B19 infection may need to be hospitalized and receive blood transfusions. Persons with immune problems may need special medical care, including treatment with immune globulin (antibodies), to help their bodies get rid of the infection.
Can parvovirus B19 infection be prevented?
There is no vaccine or medicine that prevents parvovirus B19 infection. Frequent handwashing is recommended as a practical and probably effective method to decrease the chance of becoming infected. Excluding persons with fifth disease from work, child care centers, or schools is not likely to prevent the spread of the virus, since people are contagious before they develop the rash.
Fifth disease, also called erythema infectiosum or "slapped cheek disease," is an infection caused by parvovirus B19. Outbreaks most often occur in winter and spring, but a person may become ill with fifth disease at any time of the year. Symptoms begin with a mild fever and complaints of tiredness. After a few days, the cheeks take on a flushed appearance that looks like the face has been slapped. There may also be a lacy rash on the trunk, arms, and legs. Not all infected persons develop a rash.
Most persons who get fifth disease are not very ill and recover without any serious consequences. However, children with sickle cell anemia, chronic anemia, or an impaired immune system may become seriously ill when infected with parvovirus B19 and require medical care.
If a pregnant woman becomes infected with parvovirus B19, the fetus may suffer damage, including the possibility of stillbirth. The woman herself may have no symptoms or a mild illness with rash or joint pains.
Fifth disease is believed to be spread through direct contact or by breathing in respiratory secretions from an infected person. The period of infectiousness is before the onset of the rash. Once the rash appears, a person is no longer contagious.
Some more information from www.silk.com
SORRY ABOUT THE HUGE PICTURES, BUT YOU CAN AT LEAST SEE WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE
Fifth Disease has several symptoms. Unfortunately, none are totally unique. The first symptoms are flu-like. If someone complains of headaches, soreness of joints, or a low fever, he may have Fifth Disease - then again he may just be tired and fighting off a bit of a flu.
The more unique symptoms come in the second stage - the rash.
The first rash to appear is on the face. It is reddish and gives the appearance that the face has been slapped, permanently. This is why Fifth Disease is sometimes called "Slapped-Face Disease" or "Slapped-Cheek Disease." You can click on the two photos of children to see a larger image. These are both eight-year old females who are in the slapped-face stage of the rash. These images are from the University of Erlangen, Department of Dermatology.
During the second stage of the rash, a rash appears on the chest and upper arms and legs. The only place it cannot appear is on the soles of the feet and palms of the hands. In about 50% of patients, this rash will also be itchy. This photo is also "clickable" to see a larger version, and also comes from the University of Erlangen, Department of Dermatology.
During the third and final stage of the rash it aquires a lacy appearance. The rash will fade and then suddenly re-appear again for as long as three weeks. It is believed that the rash is agitated by heat, (lying on the beach, etc), friction, excercise, and similar irritants. After about three weeks, the rash spontaneously dissapears forever.
In adults, the rash may not occur, and the only symptom they experience may be a slight pain in their joints - or none at all! This means that an adult may have fifth disease without even knowing it.
The doctor there suggested a throat culture AFTER the antibiotics, to make sure it was all gone. My family doctor and the ENT specialist both said it was ridiculous, but I made them check us all...turns out that (1) the "flu" they said I had was strep, (2) the strep was resistant to the antibiotic the doctor had been treating my son with.
They then treated us with 10 days of an antibiotic that would kill this strain, then did more throat cultures. Mine was gone, my son's was almost, but not quite gone. They gave him 3 more days of antibiotics, checked again, it was gone - and he never got his tonsils out, and he hasn't [knock on wood] had strep in the 5 years since.