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Is Fifth Disease Contagious?

Some people may wonder, "Is fifth disease contagious?" Yes, fifth disease is contagious. If a person is infected with parvovirus B19 (the virus that causes fifth disease), he or she will be contagious before the characteristic rash appears.

Is Fifth Disease Contagious?

Yes. A person infected with parvovirus B19 (the virus that causes fifth disease) is contagious during the early part of the illness, before the rash appears. By the time a child has the characteristic fifth disease symptoms, including the "slapped cheek" rash, he or she is probably no longer contagious, and may return to his or her school or childcare center.
This contagious period for fifth disease is different than that for many other rash illnesses, such as measles, in which the child is contagious while he or she has the rash.
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Information on Fifth Disease

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