Is My Kid Contagious?

Fifth Disease

This viral infection infects immune cells, causing a rash and a low-grade fever. The classic description is a "slapped cheek" appearance with bright red cheeks and a lacy, non-raised rash on the body.

Treatment There's really no specific treatment for fifth. It goes away on its own without antibiotics -- the fever within a few days and the rash within a few weeks.

Contagious factor You can't do anything to prevent spreading it or catching it. Kids who've been exposed may not show symptoms for up to two weeks, but they can be contagious for up to five days before showing symptoms. The most ironic part: by the time the red cheeks and rash appear, a child can no longer spread the infection.

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