Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.

What is Fifth Disease?

Monday, 28 February 2011 11:47 AM

Question: My daughter-in-law has been diagnosed with parvovirus. Do you know of any known cures? And do you know if food allergies could be a cause or cure to this disease?

Dr. Hibberd's Answer:

Parvovirus B19 is known as "fifth disease," a mild, self-limited rash illness giving one a slapped-cheek appearance. It is occasionally associated with transient self-limited joint aches and swelling in adults not exposed during their childhood. Symptoms are short-lived, usually lasting one to two weeks without long-term issues. Some adults may have joint aches for up to several months before disappearing permanently.

There is no relationship between fifth disease and allergy or foods. There are no birth defects associated with this condition. By the way, the animal parvoviruses are not transmitted to humans; the parvovirus B19 affects only humans.

Treatment is symptom based and conservative. There is no vaccine we use and no curative treatment is necessary. Frequent handwashing reduces its spread, but exclusion from school or work is not recommended because it doesn't sufficiently reduce transmission.

© HealthDay

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