Chicken Pox

➤ What is Chicken Pox?:
    Chicken Pox is a highly contagious viral disease. Chicken Pox causes a distinctive itchy red rash which turns into blisters that crust over. A common childhood disease, this epidemic is the handiwork of Varicella Zoster Virus (VZV).

Chicken Pox 101

Chicken Pox

Photo Credit: Creative Commons Flickr Domitille Parent 2016
➤ Also known as:
    Varicella
➤ Microbiology:
    Viral Infection.
➤ Medical Specialty:
    Infectious Diseases.
➤ Causes:
    Varicella Zoster Virus (VZV)
➤ Likely Symptoms:
    • Very itchy red rash in neck, torso and limbs
    • From red bumps to fluid-filled blisters (vesicles) which scabs over
    • Blisters appear in the mouth, scalp, around ocular area and genitals
    • Rashes will repeat itself in new areas of the body (two weeks)
    • Tiredness, Fever and Headaches
    • Very contagious up until the spots dry up completely
➤ Onset of Symptoms:
    10 to 21 days after initial exposure to infection
➤ Transmission:
    • Spread of infected droplets from sneezing or cough
    • Contact with clothing or materials from an infected person (virus active for several hours)
➤ Should I consult a Physician:
    • As soon as you see the rashes distinctive of the chickenpox infection, call your doctor. This is specially important if your baby is less than a month old.
    • Get emergency medical help, if your child exhibits vomiting, high fever or convulsions.
    • Pregnant mothers with unborn babies require immediate medical advice.
    • Stiff neck or sleppiness can be a sign of complications like Meningitis. Call your physician immediately.
    • If you are an immunosuppressed patient (HIV or undergoing chemotherapy)
➤ Complications:
    • Bacterial Infection with pus (constant scratching)
    • Bacterial Pneumonia (Children)
    • Scarring
    • Ear infection
    • Meningitis or Encephalitis or Myocarditis
➤ Diagnosis:
    This viral disease can be diagnosed based on the presenting symptoms. A PCR test (polymerase chain reaction) of the blisters may confirm infection. Antibody tests can be undertaken to verify immunity of patients.
➤ Cure or Treatment:
    Treatment:
    • Aciclovir (Shortens duration of Chickenpox infection symptom)
    • Analgesics (Paracetamol) or Acetaminophen for pain
    • Antihistamine to relieve itchiness and swelling
    • Antibiotic for secondary bacterial infection or for bacterial pneumonia
    Complimentary Treatment:
    • Drink lots of water
    • Topical Aloe Vera gel, Calamine lotion or Chickweed cream for itchiness
    • Bathing with oatmeal or baking soda in water to soothe itchiness
    • Cut patient fingernails or use hand gloves (cloth) to prevent scarring and bacterial infection to the blisters
➤ Immunity:
    Patients who recovered from Chickenpox would likely develop life-long immunity. However, the virus stays dormant in the nervous system, and may later reactivate in the form of Shingles (Herpes Zoster).

Chicken Pox Quick Notes

➤ Epidemiology:
    Chickenpox is most contagious a day or two before the onset of itchy reddish rashes. This continues up until the wound scabs dry over.
➤ Prevention of epidemic spread:
    • Keep your patient or child at home up until the blisters dried-up as it is highly contagious.
    • Immune adults supervising a patient are advised to avoid contact with pregnant women
➤ Pregnancy Risks:
    • Miscarriage, Premature Birth, Congenital damages, Natal death.

    • Fetal Varicella Syndrome for infected fetus during the first 28 weeks of gestation.

    • Neonatal Varicella for late gestation infants infected with the virus

    • Note: Pregnant women who have had previous infection and are immune to Chicken Pox will not be reinfected together with the infant.

➤ Vaccination:
    • Two shots of Chicken Pox vaccine is 90% effective in preventing infection.
    • 1st dose Age 12 to 15 Months
    • 2nd dose Age 4 to 6 Years
    • Older people (13 and above) who never got vaccinated must get two shots (28 days apart).
    • HIV infected patients or recovering Cancer patients may consider the vaccine after an advice from the physician
keywords: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
DISCLAIMER: The following data is for educational, scholarship review and archiving purposes only. By viewing this information, you release the website and its authors from any responsibility or liabilities. Though we verify and maintain the accuracy of the provided data, the absence of unintented typographical and factual errors cannot be guaranteed. Use the page at your own risk. For any suggestions, updates, credits or correction requests,
Contact Us: curematters@gmail.com.