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Roseola Infantum in Emergency Medicine Workup

  • Author: Lisa S Lewis, MD; Chief Editor: Kirsten A Bechtel, MD  more...
Updated: Jan 15, 2015

Laboratory Studies

See the list below:

  • Given the benign nature and short duration of roseola infantum, laboratory studies generally are not obtained if the child presents with a classic history.
  • Diagnosis of primary HHV-6 can be confirmed by primary viral isolation from the peripheral blood.
  • Specific immunoglobulin M (IgM) serology or a rise in HHV-6-specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) and HHV-6 DNA polymerase chain reaction can document infection, even distinguishing between HHV-6a and 6b.[6]
  • If a complete blood count (CBC) is obtained, leukopenia may be noted. The white blood cell (WBC) count usually returns to reference ranges within a week.

Other Tests

Huang et al conducted a study to identify factors for differentiating roseola infantum from urinary tract infection (UTI) and to describe a cohort of infants diagnosed with roseola infantum and sterile pyuria. The study concluded that leukocytosis is the strongest predictor of UTI over roseola infantum. Sterile pyuria may occur in infants with roseola infantum.[7]

Contributor Information and Disclosures

Lisa S Lewis, MD Attending Physician, Division of Emergency Medicine, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center

Lisa S Lewis, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Specialty Editor Board

Mary L Windle, PharmD Adjunct Associate Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy; Editor-in-Chief, Medscape Drug Reference

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Grace M Young, MD Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics, University of Maryland Medical Center

Grace M Young, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Emergency Physicians

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Chief Editor

Kirsten A Bechtel, MD Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Section of Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine; Co-Director, Injury Free Coalition for Kids, Yale-New Haven Children's Hospital

Kirsten A Bechtel, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Additional Contributors

Garry Wilkes, MBBS, FACEM Director of Clinical Training (Simulation), Fiona Stanley Hospital; Clinical Associate Professor, University of Western Australia; Adjunct Associate Professor, Edith Cowan University, Western Australia

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

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Discrete rose-pink macules/maculopapules characteristic of roseola infantum.
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