basic facts about chickenpox

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  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox




  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    What is Chickenpox?

    Chickenpox is a viral infection causedby the Herpes varicella zoster virus.

    It's spread in droplets inhaled into therespiratory tract.

    Complications are rare but serious,and can occur in previously healthy


  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Whos affected?

    Chickenpox tends to affect childrenunder ten. Most children have had theinfection by this age. In older children

    and adults, chickenpox can be moresevere.

    Children who are immunosuppressed

    (for example, on steroids) areparticularly vulnerable to complications,as are newborn babies who may catchthe infection from their mother in late


  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox



    A rash that usually begins on the body and face and lateroften spreads to the scalp and limbs.

    It may also spread to the mucous membranes especially inthe mouth and on the genitals.

    The rash is often itchy.

    It begins as small red spots which develop into blisters in a

    couple of hours. After one or two days, the blisters turn into scabs.

    New blisters may appear after three to six days.

    The number of blisters differs greatly from one person toanother.

    The infected person may have fever. These symptoms are mild in young children.

    Chickenpox lasts 7 to 10 days in children and longer inadults.

    Adults can feel very ill and take longer to recover. They arealso more likely than children to suffer complications.

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Who is at risk for

    complications? Pregnant women who have not had


    People with a weak immune system,such as those with acute or chronicleukemia or HIV.

    Patients taking medicine to suppress

    their immune system, such as long-term oral corticosteroids.
  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox



    The treatment mostly consists of easingthe symptoms.

    Remember that an infected person will

    be contagious until new blisters havestopped appearing and until all theblisters have scabs. They should stay athome while they are infectious.

    Avoid scratching the blisters because ofthe risk of infection.

    Cut the nails short or make the patientwear gloves.

    Pay attention to personal hygiene.

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox



    Calamine lotion will help relieve theitching.

    Keep the patient in cold surroundings, asheat and sweat may make the itchingworse.

    In attacks of chickenpox where the itchingis so serious that the child's sleep is totallydisturbed, antihistamine medicines with a

    heavily sedative effect can be used.Antihistamines are medicines for allergicreactions, motion sickness or insomnia .

    In serious cases of chickenpox in peoplewith a weak immune system, aciclovir (eg

    Zovirax tablets/suspension), which worksspecifically against chickenpox, can be
  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Complications that may arise

    Bacteria may infect the blisters.

    Occasionally scars may remain at thesite of the blisters.



    In very rare cases, chickenpox canresult in complications such asmeningitis, encephalitis, inflammationof the heart (myocarditis) or Reye's

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Future prognosis

    Once a person has had chickenpox,they will have immunity to the diseasefor the rest of their life. However, the

    virus may return later in life asshingles.

    A person who has active shingles can

    infect others with chickenpox, butcannot give shingles to someone else.
  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox



    Chickenpox vaccine can preventchickenpox.

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Who should get the vaccine?

    Children who have never hadchickenpox should get 2 doses ofchickenpox vaccine at these ages:

    1st Dose: 12-15 months of age

    2nd Dose: 4-6 years of age (may begiven earlier, if at least 3 months after

    the 1st dose)

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Who should get the vaccine?

    People 13 years of age and older (whohave never had chickenpox or receivedchickenpox vaccine) should get two

    doses at least 28 days apart.

    Anyone who is not fully vaccinated, andnever had chickenpox, should receive

    one or two doses of chickenpoxvaccine. The timing of these dosesdepends on the persons age.

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Who should not get the

    vaccine? People who had life-threatening allergicreaction to a previous dose ofchickenpox vaccine or to gelatin or the

    antibiotic neomycin. People who are moderately or severely

    ill at the

    time the shot is scheduled should

    usually wait

    until they recover before gettingchickenpox


  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Pregnant women should wait to getchickenpox vaccine until after they have

    given birth. Women should not get pregnantfor 1 month after getting chickenpoxvaccine.

    Some people should check with their doctor

    about whether they should get chickenpoxvaccine, including anyone who:

    Is being treated with drugs that affect theimmune system, such as steroids, for 2

    weeks or longer Has any kind of cancer

    Is getting cancer treatment with radiationor drugs

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    People who recently had a transfusionor were given other blood products

    should ask their doctor when they mayget chickenpox vaccine.

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Chickenpox vaccine reactions

    Mild reactions:

    Soreness or swelling where the shot wasgiven (about 1 out of 5 children and upto 1 out of 3 adolescents and adults)

    Fever (1 person out of 10, or less)

    Mild rash, up to a month after

    vaccination (1 person out of 25). It ispossible for these people to infect othermembers of their household, but this isextremely rare.

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Mild reactions:

    Seizure (jerking or staring) caused by

    fever (very rare).

    Severe reactions:

    Pneumonia (very rare) severe brain reactions and low blood

    count. These happen so rarelyexperts cannot tell whether they arecaused by the vaccine or not. If theyare, it is extremely rare.

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    When moderate to severe reactions

    arise, call your doctor. Tell your doctor what happened, the

    date and time it happened, and when

    the vaccination was given.

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Dear Friends,

    As you can see in this presentation theChickenpox vaccine has manycomplications and contraindications aswell as positive points. The decision ofneeds of vaccination againstChickenpox should be individual inconcern of your health status andepidemiological situation. Anyway youshould discuss with your family/sitedoctor. Also note that Chickenpoxvaccine is not included in Saipemrecommendation list of vaccination

  • 7/29/2019 BASIC FACTS About Chickenpox


    Prepared by:Mr. Lawrence V. Hilario R.N., M.N. (u.e.)Saipem Health advisor of QAFCO 5

    Medical Department

    Saipem S.p.A. Doha, QatarMob. #. +9745059954

    [email protected]

    Checked by:Dr. Mikhail Nestsiarovich

    Saipem Medical Coordinator on the Middle East Area

    mailto:[email protected]:[email protected]