Pink, flat, or slightly raised bumps around 2 to 3 mm in diameter are typical of roseola (sixth disease). In roseola (sixth disease), the rash is pink to red and is typically widespread. This image displays the rash of roseola (sixth disease) that follows a high fever. This image displays the bright pink rash typical of roseola (sixth disease).
Share |

Roseola (Sixth Disease)  A parent's guide to condition and treatment information

Picture of Roseola (Sixth Disease): Pink, flat, or slightly raised bumps around 2 to 3 mm in diameter are typical of roseola (sixth disease). Divider line
Pink, flat, or slightly raised bumps around 2 to 3 mm in diameter are typical of roseola (sixth disease).
left arrow
right arrow
Overview
Roseola, also known as sixth disease, exanthem subitum, and roseola infantum, is a mild illness that mainly affects children that will go away on its own. Roseola is caused by viruses of the herpes type. Infected children have a few days of high fever followed by a rash as the fever goes down. The rash usually lasts 1–2 days, or it may go away more quickly.
Who's At Risk
Roseola commonly occurs in children under 3. Substances from the mother's immune system (maternal antibodies) protect the child from getting roseola before the age of 6 months; however, it can occur in children between the ages of 3 months to 4 years.
Signs and Symptoms
If your child is otherwise well but has a high fever over 102 degrees Fahrenheit for 4 days, followed by a rash on the torso, he or she likely has roseola.

The fever that accompanies roseola is followed immediately by the appearance of rose-pink, flat or slightly raised bumps 2–3 mm in diameter that begin on the torso and may spread to the neck as well as the arms and legs (upper and lower extremities).
Self-Care Guidelines
Roseola goes away without any treatment. However, you might:
  • Control the child's fever with acetaminophen (Tylenol®) or ibuprofen and cool sponge baths. (Note: Do not use very cold water, ice, or alcohol rubs.)
  • Encourage the child to drink fluids to avoid dehydration.
There is no way to prevent roseola from spreading because it is contagious before any symptoms appear.
When to Seek Medical Care
  • Call the doctor if the fever does not go down with acetaminophen (Tylenol), if the child is difficult to wake up, or if the child is very irritable or appears very ill.
  • If the child has convulsions or seizures due to fever, call the doctor or emergency room immediately.
Treatments Your Physician May Prescribe
There is no specific treatment for roseola other than measures to control fever.



References

Bolognia, Jean L., ed. Dermatology, pp.1261-1262. New York: Mosby, 2003.

Freedberg, Irwin M., ed. Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 6th ed. pp.2099. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2003.
Last Updated: 22 Dec 2008