Fifth Disease. Red rash on a young boy's face due to an infectious disease caused by a parvovirus. Fifth disease is also known as "slapped cheek" disease or erythema infectiosum. It is the least well-known of all the common diseases of childhood. Fifth disease affects children between the ages of 2 to 14; outbreaks appear in the spring. Symptoms of a spreading rash & a mild fever appear after an incubation period of between 4 to 14 days. Adults, who only rarely contract the disease, may suffer from joint pain & swelling. Treatment is minimal, consisting of bed rest, good hydration & paracetamol to reduce any fever.
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