Rubella, also called German measles or three-day measles, is a viral infectious disease and it can be detected through specific red rash.
Know the basics
What is rubella?
Rubella, also called German measles or three-day measles, is a viral infectious disease and it can be detected through specific red rash (spots or pimples). Rubella used to be very common disease in children before State and Ministry of Health recommends that all children should be vaccinated against measles vaccination associated, mumps and rubella (MMR).
Rubella is unlike measles (rubeola), although the two diseases cause red rash. Rubella is caused by a virus, which is different from measles, and it is not contagious and serious as measles.
How common is rubella?
Anyone is at risk of rubella. Rubella in both children and adults get improved quickly, not serious and rarely have complications. Real threat of infectious rubella is pregnant women. If pregnant mothers are infected with the virus, especially during the first 4 months of pregnancy, babies are born at risk of birth defects or even stillborn fetus.
Know the symptoms
What are the symptoms of rubella?
Children may not have any symptoms when being infected rubella. Typically, the disease takes 2 to 3 weeks after exposure to have symptoms.
If occur, symptoms may include:
- Skin rash on head spreading down the body, lasting from 2 to 3 days;
- Headache, mild fever;
- Stuffy or runny nose;
- Swollen lymph nodes in neck or behind ears.
Adults and teens will have additional symptoms including:
- Lose appetite;
- Conjunctivitis (infection of the eyelids and eyeballs);
- Swelling and joint pain in young women.
These symptoms usually disappear within a few days but also there are longer cases.
There may be some symptoms not listed above. If you have any concerns about a symptom, please consult your doctor.
When should I see my doctor?
You need consult or take the child to hospital when you see you or your child has rash or any symptoms listed above.
During pregnancy, you will take Rubella tests and vaccine from a maternity doctor when needed. However, if you are pregnant or think you are pregnant and simultaneously detect Rubella symptoms, you should immediately hospitalize for medical supervision.
If you have any signs or symptoms listed above or have any questions, please consult with your doctor. Everyone’s body acts differently. It is always best to discuss with your doctor what is best for your situation.
Know the causes
What causes rubella?
Rubella virus causes rubella. The virus is transmitted from person to person through contact with secretions from nose and throat of infected people. This disease is highly contagious and easily transmitted to others. A person may transmit the virus to others one week before skin rash appears until 1 week after rash clears. Pregnant women can pass the virus to the baby through bloodstream.
Know the risk factors
What increases my risk for rubella?
There are many risk factors for this disease such as:
- Have ever been rubella;
- Never have interlaboratory vaccination mumps, measles and rubella;
- Travel to other countries or places of rubella epidemic.
There are no risk factors not meaning you cannot get disease. These signs are for reference only. You should consult doctor for more details.
Understand the diagnosis & treatment
The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. ALWAYS consult with your doctor for more information.
How is rubella diagnosed?
Rubella is quite difficult to diagnose and its symptoms are not clear. Your doctor will diagnose from the clinical history and examination of your symptoms or your children. If you are pregnant with symptoms of rubella or have been exposed to rubella patients, doctors may remove fluid from throat, blood or urine samples for testing.
How is rubella treated?
Currently, process of autoimmune disease and Rubella has been not shortened. Once being infected rubella infection, your body child will automatically resistant and immune to the disease permanently. If your children feel uncomfortable, you can use antipyretics and analgesics such as paracetamol dose usually for your children. You can also ask pharmacist at drug counter the topical cream if itched.
If you are pregnant, your doctor may prescribe antigen Rubella (hyperimmune globulin) to help your virus resistance but it still remains risk of birth defects.
Lifestyle changes & home remedies
What are some lifestyle changes or home remedies that can help me manage rubella?
The following lifestyles and home remedies might help you cope with this disease:
- Use medications prescription.
- Avoid scratching because it will leave scars. You can use the itch-relieving creams sold in pharmacies.
- You or your sick child should avoid contacting with others until get better, especially do not stand near or in contact with pregnant people.
- Take Rubella aspirin for children.
If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor to better understand the best solution for you.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Review Date: May 30, 2016 | Last Modified: January 4, 2017
Ferri, Fred. Ferri’s Netter Patient Advisor. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders / Elsevier, 2012. Print edition.
Porter, R. S., Kaplan, J. L., Homeier, B. P., & Albert, R. K. (2009). The Merck manual home health handbook. Whitehouse Station, NJ, Merck Research Laboratories. Print edition. Page 1782.
Rubella. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/rubella/basics/definition/con-20020067?p=1. Accessed July 7, 2016.