A charming picture - a child in a green speck! Almost every person - both large and small - has been such a masterpiece of avant-garde painting, because few people pass chickenpox. Annually, from 500 thousand to 1 million children carry chickenpox in Russia. Let's talk about this disease in more detail.
Where does chickenpox come from
An acute infectious disease called chickenpox causes the Varicella zoster virus, which belongs to a very common family of herpes viruses (from the same harmful company, for example, the herpes simplex virus). The main feature of Varicella zoster is its extreme “volatility”, which allows it to move quickly with a stream of air up to 20 meters. True, despite this “superpower”, the villain is very unstable and easily dies at low or, conversely, high temperature, as well as under the influence of ultraviolet radiation. Keep in mind: Varicella zoster virus causes two diseases at once - chicken pox and herpes zoster (a chronic disease of the elderly - with vesicular rashes and damage to the nervous system). So you can catch the infection by contact with patients and that, and the other ailment. The incubation period of chickenpox, that is, the time during which you can get sick, is 11-21 days. The peak incidence occurs in the autumn-winter period, which is typical for most infections of a viral nature. The most susceptible "contingent" - preschoolers and younger students.
By the way: Chickenpox can be ill twice, but only in very rare cases - we are talking about atypical forms of chickenpox.
What does it look like?
The first symptoms of the disease - fever and malaise - are actually characteristic of most acute respiratory infections. But here the rash in the form of vesicles is the visiting card of chickenpox, and it is presented very quickly - on the 1-2nd day of the disease. First, spots appear on the skin, which soon turn into seals, and then - into bubbles (vesicles) of 2-5 mm in size. At first, the vesicles resemble dew drops, but on the second day their contents become cloudy, after which the vesicles dry out and turn into crusts that disappear after 1-3 weeks. Scars in their place usually do not form, but pigmentation remains.
Attention: Rashes do not appear simultaneously, but “jerks”, within 3-4 days - on the face, trunk, extremities and on the scalp. Carefully inspect the baby’s scalp: chickenpox is very fond of hair, and it is under them that the bubbles usually appear first. But on the palms and soles of the rash never happens.
Rashes slightly itch - and, of course, the baby really wants to scratch himself. The problem is that you can easily infect the wounds. To prevent such complications, the child is decorated with brilliant green - and this must be done! True, chickenpox is unusually insidious and affects not only the skin: rashes also appear on the mucous membranes of the oral cavity, conjunctiva of the eyes, genitals and larynx. There, the vesicles quickly turn into ulcers, and then - into surface erosion, which heal on 3-5 days.
Out of the ordinary
There are atypical forms of chickenpox, for example:
- Rudimentary. It affects children with residual immunity against chickenpox (if the infection was mild), as well as those who received immunoglobulins and blood products in the incubation period. The disease proceeds with minimal rashes against the background of good health and without an increase in body temperature.
- Hemorrhagic. This form is found in debilitated children suffering from malignant blood diseases (hemoblastoses) and hemorrhagic diathesis, sometimes it is diagnosed in newborns. The disease is severe - with high fever, severe intoxication (a sharp deterioration in well-being), damage to internal organs, nosebleeds, hemoptysis
etc.Rashes on the skin are filled with bloody contents. In the most difficult situations, death is not excluded.
- Generalized (visceral). This type of chickenpox affects mainly newborns, but sometimes older children receiving immunosuppressive drugs. The disease is severe, with high fever and damage to all internal organs.
Vaccination: Vaccination against chickenpox is not included in the Russian national calendar of vaccinations. Nevertheless, healthy children who did not have chickenpox can be vaccinated in the first 72 hours after contact with the patient. For this, the live vaccines Varilrix (Belgium), Okavax (Japan), Varivax (USA) are used - they are administered to children from 1 year old subcutaneously only once and provide immunity for 20 years. What threatens chickenpox and how it treat
What does this threaten?
In most cases, chickenpox passes without any problems, but nevertheless there are complications after the infection - neurological (chickenpox encephalitis, meningoencephalitis
To wash or not to wash: While rashes continue to appear, a baby should not be bathed - otherwise the further spread of the infection cannot be avoided. As soon as all (all!) The bubbles turn into crusts, the baby will be able to take baths with potassium permanganate. An older child is not forbidden to put in the shower, but the washcloth in any case remains prohibited! After water procedures, dry the crusts thoroughly and treat them with brilliant green.
We will be treated!
As a rule, experienced parents can easily distinguish chickenpox from other infections. If you are new and in doubt, hurry to call a doctor at home. Having assessed the nature of the rashes, the doctor will make a diagnosis - immediately or after using special laboratory diagnostic methods:
- virological, aimed at the detection of Varicella zoster in vesicle (vesicular) fluid or in particles of flaky skin
- serological tests for the presence of antibodies to chickenpox virus
- molecular genetic, allowing to determine the DNA of the virus in the vesicle fluid and blood
Only babies with severe forms of the disease, children living in poor social conditions, and also those who receive hormone therapy need hospitalization. The remaining patients are treated at home, and patients must be isolated - up to 5 days from the moment the last elements of the rash appear, or up to 9 days from the start of the rash. For children under 3 years old who have not had chickenpox, the first 10 days after contact with the virus carrier may be in the children's team, but then they are still isolated from 11 to 21 days.
The patient should spend about a week in bed. He needs careful skin and mucous membrane care. Each element of the rash twice a day needs to be lubricated with antiseptics - a 1% solution of brilliant green or 1−2% solution of potassium permanganate (potassium permanganate). Now there are special products with antiseptics - for example, Cicabio lotion.
One of the rules of successful treatment is strict observance of personal hygiene - daily change of bed linen, washing clothes, washing hands. Since the temptation to comb the drying crusts is very great, make sure that the baby's nails are always short cut. If rashes appear on the mucous membranes of the oral cavity, after eating, you need to rinse your mouth with disinfectants - furacilin, a decoction of chamomile, sage or calendula, a solution of drinking soda. With eye damage, a 20-30% solution of sodium sulfacyl or interferon is instilled into them. Particular attention is paid to the genital mucosa. Shown daily hygienic baths and washings with solutions of antiseptics (for example, potassium permanganate). Then the skin is gently wet with a softened cloth, and the affected areas are treated with rosehip oil or sea buckthorn.
Antiviral drugs are prescribed exclusively by the doctor! Most often they are prescribed for severe forms of chickenpox. Antibiotics are used if a secondary bacterial skin infection is added to the underlying problem. But taking multivitamin preparations will benefit in any situation.
Antihistamines are indicated to relieve skin itching, and paracetamol is used to lower the temperature. Also, on the recommendation of a doctor, ibuprofen can be used.Caution: Children with chickenpox (or any infection that causes fever) should not be given aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) and its agents. Otherwise, there is a risk of Reye's syndrome, leading to death.
While the baby is sick, you will have to forbid him to meet with his beloved grandparents - in the elderly, the chickenpox virus can cause herpes zoster. A recovered child for another 2 weeks needs to comply with a special protective regime. With preventive vaccinations, you will have to wait about two months. Children who have had severe forms of chickenpox need to be shown to a neurologist from time to time.About the smallest: Children in the first months of life rarely get chickenpox, because they get immunity from their mother (unless, of course, she had chickenpox at one time). In the event that a woman has not encountered this sore, she will not pass the appropriate antibodies to the baby - and then he can get sick at a very young age.
Another story is chickenpox during pregnancy. When infected in the first 4 months of an “interesting situation”, the baby is born with symptoms of congenital chickenpox, namely with skin lesions (scars and pigmentation), as well as bones, nervous system, etc. When infected after the 20th week, the baby may signs of herpes zoster appear. If a pregnant woman had chickenpox 5 days before birth, the symptoms of the disease in the newborn appear on the 5-10th day of life. Such an infection proceeds severely and often ends fatally. If the mother became ill 6–21 days before the birth, the newborn will have chickenpox symptoms immediately after birth, and in this case, fortunately, the disease will have a mild course.