Fifth Disease – Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Pictures

Fifth disease is also known by other names such as slapped cheek syndrome, Erthythema infectiosum and slap face etc. It is a common disease observed in children of age group 6-13 and it attacks them only in winter season. The fifth disease has got is name as slapped cheek syndrome due to the fact that the faces of the infected persons turn completely reddish as if beaten by someone. A kind of rash which popularly affects kids during spring and winter season is called fifth disease and it highly contagious and more children are at risk of getting this disease from the affected child.


  • Though the exact causes for fifth disease are not known, children are more prone to this disease due to weak immunity. Old people and adults whose immunity is weakened due to some other infection may also get this rash like disease.
  • Fifth disease is caused by human parvovirus B 19 and it generally attacks the person whose immunity is reduced. Many times the rash may return to the same person after few weeks when the person exposes himself to harsh sunlight.
  • Extreme heat and heightened stress may also trigger formation of rashes on the face. Fever and exercise may also cause fifth disease on some people.
  • Adults who are anemic may get this disease and it may affect their joints causing chronic joint pain.


Common symptoms of fifth disease are fever, extreme fatigue, nasal congestion, headache, vomiting and nausea. Sometimes the throat may get infected for some days. Many of the above symptoms will be present for few days followed by reddish rash on the face. It would start as a light pinkish color on the face, which would gradually turn to bright red color in 2 or 3 days.Some adults who are affected with fifth disease, may get mild to severe joint pain which may last up to 6 months.

Pregnant women may get this disease during the first 3 months of pregnancy which can induce abortion. The slapped cheek syndrome may cause various complications in people who are suffering from Sickle cell disease.

Pictures of Fifth Disease :

Images, Pics, Pictures and Photos of Fifths Disease

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Treatment :

Normally fifth disease does not require any treatment and the appearance of reddish rash on the face will fade away after 3 or 4 days. However you can take your child to doctor in case if he has other symptoms like fever, stomach pain and fatigue. Doctor would prescribe acetaminophen such as Tylenol for reducing the fever. Care should be taken if someone gets the fifth disease at home, since it can easily spread to another person through sweat. Give lot of fluids to the affected person and wash your hands thoroughly after touching them.

It is necessary to treat a child who is suffering from fever (apart from reddish cheek) with antibiotics to bring down the fever and reduce the symptoms of rash.

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