Chicken pox is a common disease
caused by the varicella zoster virus
(VZV) which is a member of the herpes
It is very contagious and usually
occurs during childhood (normally 5-
9) , but you can get it at any time in
It is most common at the end of winter
and the beginning of Spring
Source: primary secretions of
respiratory tract of infected persons; to
a lesser degree, skin lesions.
Transmissions: direct contact, droplet
(airborne) spread and contaminated
Incubation period: 2-3 weeks, usually
Period of communicability:
Probably 1 day before eruption of
lesions (prodromal period) to 6 days
after first crop of vesicles when crusts
Note: communicability period
the time during which an infectious
agent may be transferred directly or
indirectly from an infected person to
another person, from an infected
animal to humans, or from an infected
person to animals, including
Chicken pox often begins with a slight
fever, malaise and loss of appetite.
Within 1or 2 days, the rash appears,
normally starting on the chest or back
and highly pruritic.
At first the rash begins areas of red spots
which then form blisters and spreads to
the rest of the body (papule, vesicle,
The blisters open and form a outside
within a few days.
The rash can continue to break out for
4-5 days as older lesions crust and
Itching can accompany the rash along
with fever, swollen lymph nodes, sore
throat and general body aches.
Cures and treatments
There are no actual cures for it ,but you can get a
vaccine shot to help prevent it.
Baths with uncooked oatmeal, cornstarch can help
Tylenol is used for fever or pain relief. (Aspirin should be
Antiviral drugs such as Acyclovir may be prescribed.
You can put Calamine lotion on the pocks to help stop
Maintain strict isolation in hospital.
Isolate child in home until vesicles
have dried (usually 1 week after onset
of disease) and isolate high –risk
children from infected children.
Administer skin care: give bath and
change clothes and linens daily;
Apply mittens if child scratches.
Keep child cool (may decrease number
Lessen pruritus; keep child occupied.
Remove loose crusts that rub and
Teach child to apply pressure to
pruritic area rather than scratching it.
If older child, reason with child
regarding danger of scar formation
Avoid use of aspirin.