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What is the roseola rash in babies?

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Quick Answer

Roseola is a mild viral rush common in children between the ages of 6 months and 2 years, according to WebMD. Two viruses from the herpes family cause roseola. Symptoms include a high fever and rashes, notes Mayo Clinic. Other possible signs and symptoms include irritability, loss of appetite, mild diarrhea and swollen eyelids.

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Full Answer

Roseola, also called sixth disease or roseola infantum, is a mild viral infection characterized by a high fever followed by spotty, rosy-pink rashes, explains Baby Center. The main causes are the human herpes virus 6 and the human herpes virus 7, according to Mayo Clinic.

Roseola spreads through fluids from the throat or nose when a person with the infection coughs, laughs, sneezes or talks, reports WebMD. The incubation period of roseola is nine to 10 days, reports Everyday Health. Symptoms of roseola may include a sudden high fever of 103 degrees Fahrenheit, according to Mayo Clinic. The child may have a sore throat, cough, runny nose and swollen lymph nodes. The fever may last between three and five days.

When the fever subsides, pink patches or spots may appear on the child's skin, according to Mayo Clinic. The rashes often appear on the child's chest, abdomen and back and may spread to the neck and arms. Roseola is not a serious disease, but parents should call their pediatrician if the child experiences convulsions, if his fever is higher than 103 degrees Fahrenheit or lasts more than seven days, and if the rashes do not improve after three days.

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