Parvovirus B19 is a viral infection that is benign. It is transmitted by respiratory secretions, blood and blood products.
Prodromal symptoms like fever, runny nose and a headache usually occur within 1 week of exposure to the virus.
This viral infection occurs classically in three stages. It includes a face rash, followed by a truncal rash, which is then followed by a phase of reappearances of the truncal rash.
This is the most classically known symptom of erythema on the cheeks that makes the child look as if they have just been “slapped.”
24 hours following face rash, a maculopapular rash on the trunk appears symmetrically on upper and lower extremities. This lasts about 1 week.
The third phase of this disease is a clearing and recurrence of the rash. This occurs usually if the skin is irritated or traumatized by sunlight, heat, cold, or friction.
Reticulocytopenia or aplastic crisis occurs in children with weakened immune systems – leukemia, HIV+, and other hemolytic diseases. These patients have decreased numbers of white blood cells.
This is a self-limiting complication usually occurring in adult women.
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