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It may take 5 to 15 days for a child to have symptoms of roseola after being exposed to the virus. A high fever may start suddenly and may reach 105°F. A child is most contagious during the high fever, before the rash occurs. The fever lasts 3 to 5 days and then suddenly goes away.
As the fever goes away, a pink rash develops. The rash is either flat or raised lesions on the abdomen. It then spreads to the face, arms, and legs.
Your child may also have symptoms such as:
Febrile seizures are fairly common in children with roseola. Febrile seizures occur when a child's temperature rises quickly. Febrile seizures are generally not harmful. But they can be very scary. Not every child with a high temperature is at risk for a febrile seizure. Febrile seizures occur in about 3 in 100 children under the age of 5. This type of seizure may run in families.
The symptoms of roseola can be like other health conditions. Make sure your child sees his or her healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
Treatment will depend on your child’s symptoms, age, and general health. It will also depend on how severe the condition is. Antibiotics are not used to treat this illness.
The goal of treatment is to help reduce symptoms. Treatment may include:
Talk with your child’s healthcare providers about the risks, benefits, and possible side effects of all medicines. Don't give ibuprofen to a child younger than 6 months old, unless your healthcare provider tells you to. Don't give aspirin to children. Aspirin can cause a serious health condition called Reye syndrome.
Call the healthcare provider if your child has:
Tips to help you get the most from a visit to your child’s healthcare provider:
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