Rubella

What is Ruella?

Rubella is a three-day mild measles. However, if a pregnant woman gets it, it may lead to serious fetal infection and malformation. It is caused by the rubella virus.

Rubella can occur in susceptible persons by the natural influx of the virus via the nasopharynx. Congenital rubella results from the transplacental transmission of the virus to the fetus from the infected mother and may be associated with growth retardation, infiltration of the liver and spleen, and pneumonia.

Rubella is not as contagious as measles. However, once a person has rubella, she/he has immunity for life.

Clinical Features of Rubella

1. Rubella occurs between the age of 13-14 years.
2. Incubation period 14-21 days.
3. Malaise, headache, and low grade fever.
4. Mild conjunctivitis and enlarged lymph glands.
5. The rash commences on the forehead and face and spreads downward to the trunk and extremities. The rash is fine, of light hue, usually discrete. The rash lasts for 3 days. Rash
disappears as suddenly as it appears.

Management of Rubella

1. Bed rest.
2. Analgesics.

Complications of Rubella

Congenital Rubella: It is usually the result of maternal infections during the first trimester of pregnancy. Some of the fetal effects are:

1. Congenital heart disease.
2. Deafness.
3. Eye lesions-corneal clouding, cataracts.
4. Microcephaly (small skull), mental retardation.
5. In later years, diabetes may occur.