Fifth disease in schools
Fifth Disease is a generally mild viral illness. It primarily affects preschool and young school-aged children. It is slightly contagious and is spread through respiratory secretions. Early symptoms may include low-grade fever, stuffy or runny nose, headache, nausea, and muscle aches. Then a rash developed over the cheeks resembling “slapped cheeks.” This “slapped cheek” appearance fades in about 4 days. Two days after the rash, the student may develop a lacy, reddened rash that begins on the extremities and extends to the face and buttocks. This rash fades in 6 to 14 days.
Unfortunately, Fifth Disease is not diagnosed until the characteristic rash appears and at that time, the child is no longer contagious. The biggest concern is for pregnant women. If you or someone you know is pregnant and has been in contact with a child with fifth disease, you are encouraged to contact your health care provider. The health care provider may want to run a blood test to determine immunity to fifth disease.
If your child is suffering from the early symptoms of Fifth Disease, please keep him/her home to prevent the spread of infection. Frequent hand-washing is also key in preventing the spread of any infection.
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Beverly City School is a Preschool through 8th grade school located in Beverly City, New Jersey.
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