This page has been robot translated, sorry for typos if any. Original content here.

What causes chickenpox for measles, and scarlet fever for rubella?

Корь, скарлатина, краснуха

💉 Measles (Latin Morbilli) - an acute infectious viral disease with a very high level of infectiousness, which is characterized by high temperature (up to 40.5 ° C), inflammation of the mucous membranes of the oral cavity and upper respiratory tract, conjunctivitis and the characteristic spotty-papular rash of the skin , general intoxication. According to estimates of the World Health Organization, in 2017 about 110 thousand people died from measles in the world, 92 thousand of them are children under five years old. Measles remains one of the notable causes of infant mortality in developing countries (1.3% of infant mortality for 2016).

💉 Scarlet fever (Italian scarlattina, from Wed-century. Lat. Scarlatinum - bright red) - an infectious disease caused by hemolytic streptococcus group A (Streptococcus pyogenes). Manifested small-point rash, fever, general poisoning.

💉 Rubella (Latin rubeolla) or the third disease - an epidemic viral disease with an incubation period of about 15-24 days. It is usually a non-dangerous disease, affecting mostly children, but it can cause serious congenital malformations if a woman becomes infected at the beginning of pregnancy. The name “third disease” comes from the times when a list of diseases that provoked a child rash was made, in which the rubella was in third place.

Parents should not make the diagnosis to the sick child themselves and prescribe treatment. But to understand the seriousness of the situation can be at home. We collected the most frequent.


🌡 The disease begins with indisposition, the temperature rises to 38 ° C, then the first rash appears: a reddish rash in the form of bubbles filled with a clear liquid. At first there are not many of them, but the next day the child is literally sprinkled with red papules: arms and legs, neck, stomach, face, and even mucous membranes. Such rashes continue throughout the week: in one place the bubbles dry up, forming brownish crusts, in the other place new ones appear.

Children tolerate chickenpox quite easily, but adults can have serious complications.

With weak immunity, chickenpox can reappear, already in the form of shingles.

🕘 The incubation period lasts from 11 to 21 days. The infection is transmitted only by airborne droplets. The child becomes contagious 2 days before the first rash appears and ceases to be 5 days after the last rash appears.

What to fear? Complications of staphylococci and streptococci entering the vesicles. Do not allow your child to comb out the rash, be sure to treat the papules with either brilliant green or dark solution of potassium permanganate. Change and boil laundry often. Crusts do not rip off, so there is no pock.

💉 Vaccination. Many countries consider vaccination against chickenpox compulsory for a child, while our vaccination program is just being developed.

Корь, скарлатина, краснуха


🌡 The disease begins with a sharp rise in temperature to 39–40 ° C, a runny nose, rough “barking” cough, redness of the eyes.

The child complains of headache and pain in the eyes.

On the second day, whitish specks with a red border, a characteristic symptom of measles, appear on the mucous membrane of the cheeks. After another 3-4 days, a rash appears - very large, bright red - first on the face, behind the ears, on the neck, then on the whole body and on the third day - on the folds of the arms and legs and on the fingers. After that, the temperature gradually decreases, the rash darkens, begins to peel off and completely passes after a week and a half.

Sometimes during a rash a new temperature jump occurs. During the fever, the child must always lie in bed, drink a lot.

🕘 The incubation period lasts 9-14 days. The infection is transmitted by airborne droplets. The child is contagious from the moment of the first manifestations of the disease and all the time that the rash keeps.

What to fear? Complications in the form of bronchitis, otitis media, lymphadenitis, pneumonia, meningoencephalitis.

💉 Vaccination. Vaccination against measles is carried out in 1 year, six months later - again, it protects the immune system for 10-15 years.

Those who have had measles retain immunity for life.

Scarlet fever

🌡 The disease is acute: high fever, headache, the child complains that it hurts him to swallow.

Sometimes vomiting.

Scarlet fever is always accompanied by angina, and its most characteristic symptom is bright crimson tonsils.

The rash appears on the very first day of the disease: these are small, barely noticeable pink dots on the face and body. In the lower abdomen, on the sides and in the skin folds, the rash is more intense. It passes within a week, without leaving pigmentary traces. In its place the skin flakes a little.

🕘 The incubation period can be from 2 hours to 10 days. Scarlet fever is transmitted not only by airborne droplets, but also through dishes, household items, toys. The child is contagious to others during the first 10 days after the onset of the disease.

What to fear? Complications of the kidneys, heart, which manifest themselves after the normalization of temperature and the disappearance of the rash and sore throat.

💉 Vaccination. Vaccination against scarlet fever is not. Immunity from the disease persists for life. But those who have had scarlet fever always have the risk to get another streptococcal infection - otitis, sore throat.


🌡 The disease begins with some malaise, a weak headache, a slight cold, and coughing.

Rarely, but it happens that the temperature rises to 38 ° C.

The rash usually appears on the first or second day of the disease. First on the face, then spreads all over the body and lasts about a week.

A typical manifestation of rubella is an increase and soreness of the occipital lymph nodes.

🕘 The incubation period is from 11 to 24 days. Transmitted by airborne droplets. The child is dangerous to others a week before the rash and for another 10 days from the time of rash.

What to fear? Complications of arthritis. The most dangerous rubella for pregnant women, as it causes fetal pathology and is a direct indication for abortion.

💉 Vaccination. The first takes place in 1–1.5 years, the second - in 6 years. Immunity persists for about 20 years. Doctors recommend further vaccination of girls and women at an older age - to protect their future pregnancy.

Why else is rash?

>> Roseola

A viral disease, it is also called the "three-day fever." It manifests itself as a sudden increase in temperature (sometimes up to 39–40 ° C), which lasts for 2–3 days, then normalizes, and after a day a small pink rash appears on the body. Its characteristic feature is that when it is pressed, it turns pale. After 3–7 days, the rash disappears.

Doctors rarely make such a diagnosis, because before the rash appears, parents have time to “feed” the child an antibiotic and take the rash for an allergic reaction.

What to do? When fever give the child only antipyretic drugs, drink a lot. The rash will pass without antihistamine drugs.

>> prickly heat

Usually in infants. These are small rashes of reddish blisters filled with clear liquid, mainly on the breast, back, in the neck and in the groin area. It usually appears in babies whose parents are too warm.

What to do? Do not wrap. Do baby air baths. Bathe in a weak solution of potassium permanganate or a series. After the bath sprinkle with irritation talcum powder.

>> Vesiculopustosis

These are the effects of prickly heat. If it is not treated in time, then staphylococcus can enter the vesicles (pustules) and they begin to fester.

What to do? On the recommendation of the doctor to process pustules with antiseptics and talcum powder.


Children's infectious diseases specialist Vitaly Yevtushenko told how to distinguish measles from chickenpox. Illustrative examples showed on the air "Snidanku s 1 + 1". According to him, only doctors can precisely distinguish one disease from another. Because not all symptoms are obvious.

"However, rubella provokes a small, rounded rash. But the dangerous disease of measles begins with fever and symptoms similar to ARVI - cough, runny nose. And then somewhere around 3-4 days a rash appears. It often resembles such large spots. They can merge with each other, forming patterns, and is also characteristic of measles, that it appears primarily on the face, on the head, "said Yevtushenko

But there is a 100% measles symptom. This is the appearance of white dots in the mouth, which may have a slight redness around. They can be compared with semolina, because they are small and round. According to the infectious diseases specialist, there is no specific treatment for measles. Doctors deal with symptoms. The main danger of the disease - the complications that it can cause. For example, pneumonia or encephalitis (inflammation of the brain).

Корь, скарлатина, краснуха