Roseola Infantum in Emergency Medicine Follow-up

Updated: Mar 05, 2018
  • Author: Lisa S Lewis, MD; Chief Editor: Kirsten A Bechtel, MD  more...
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Follow-up

Deterrence/Prevention

Because of the ubiquity of the virus, isolation of patients with HHV-6 infection is probably unnecessary.

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Complications

Complications of roseola infantum may include the following:

  • Encephalitis (rare) [10]

  • Meningitis

    • According to Yoshikawa and Asano, the presence of HHV-6 in cerebrospinal fluid has been demonstrated by polymerase chain reaction in 3 of 8 children with febrile seizures and in 3 of 3 children with encephalitis. [11]

    • CNS primary invasion and complications by HHV-6 appear to occur during the acute febrile portion of the illness.

  • Latency - Like other herpes viruses, HHV-6 and HHV-7 may persist in the salivary glands, peripheral blood, and brain. [12] HHV-6 may reactivate following organ or marrow transplant and may mimic graft versus host disease. It additionally may have a possible role in the development of temporal lobe epilepsy in immunocompromised patients, [13] as well as the flare and severity of drug-induced hypersensitivity syndromes. [14]

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Prognosis

See the list below:

  • The clinical course of roseola infantum is acute and benign, and complete recovery without sequelae is expected.

  • The skin eruption gradually fades and resolves without scarring.

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Patient Education

For excellent patient education resources, visit eMedicine's Children's Health Center. Also, see eMedicine's patient education article Skin Rashes in Children.

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