J.D. asks from Fresno, CA on November 18, 2008
Chickenpox or Not?
My four year old son has had the chickenpox immunization, but several days ago came out with spots on his belly. I thought they may be bites at first but they spread a little, still only on his belly though. My husband said they were chickenpox; pediatrician (not his regular one)said not sure, "maybe a fungal thing like you'd get from bacteria in a hot tub (?) keep an eye on him to see if it spreads more" . He didn't suggest any creams or meds. I don't know where he would be exposed to a fungus like that- he does attend preschool though. He's run a fever for 2 days, complained of sore throat and headache. Have any of you had experience with something like this? Could it be chickenpox in an isolated area? Wondering what the heck is wrong with my child??? Thanks!
So What Happened?™
Thank you Thank you to all who shared regarding my sons' strange spots inquiry! He stayed home from preschool yesterday (his preschools' Thanksgiving Feast day) because of a lingering cough and he slept until 11am! Still don't know exactly what is going on- will probably make appt. with his regular doctor next week. I have so many questions to ask now and have so much more knowledge thanks to your responses! Thanks to all! J. D.
C.B. answers from San Francisco on November 19, 2008
My second grader got them in 1st grade. She had 2 chicken pox shots. A friend of a friend had them and that was it she caught them. They looked like blisters, but not big like you and I might of had them. They did not itch or bother her, but they did, too, start on her chest and spread to her back (just a few) and a handfull on her legs. Not very many of them though...
She missed a week of school, because it took awhile for them to go away.. because they weren't scabbing up like mine did. and i have 2 younger children who did not get them who only had 1 shot of the immunization..
Whatever.. it wasn't nearly as bad as I remember it, so I am thankful of that.
C.B. answers from San Francisco on November 19, 2008
It very well could be chickenpox and I would definitely be looking for another doctor! When you have an immunization it actually gives you a very mild case of whatever illness you're vaccinating against. like the flu shot will give you a MILD case of the flu so that you build up antibodies to fight off a severe case. He probably has a mild case of chickenpox and I would treat the spots with calamine lotion and give him some benadryl.
C.F. answers from Sacramento on November 19, 2008
I just wanted to mention 2 things based on what advice you have already received. 1 is Reyes Syndrome is caused by Aspirin, Ibprofuen is fine for children (in fact pediatricians prefer it but sometimes it is not as well tolerated as Tylenol). 2 is my son's pediatrician said that it's best to use straight hydrocortisone ointment rather than benadryl ointment because apparently the benadryl ointment can sometimes cause children to have a reaction which can make them not be able to take benadryl later for allergic reactions.
Other than that I know that my son's pediatrician has said that usually chicken pox and similar infections spread. As well, chicken pox will go through a cycle where they are filled with some fluid, then they pop and crust over. Whether it is a mild case or a full out case if its chicken pox it should go through this process.
K.U. answers from San Francisco on November 19, 2008
I have read that the vaccine is not all that effective and can spread shingles to older people with contact. It certainly seems possible that he could have it. No vaccine is 100% and many of them are found to be more or less ineffective. Pharmaceutical companies often publish skewed results to their testing, so comparing results in medical journals like JAMA NEJM will give you a better idea of what works and what doesn't. Doctors often don't even know the real results because they are briefed by Big Pharma: given literature and samples, and then they rarely read the independent testing. With something like chicken pox it's actually better to just get the virus so as to develop real immunity. It isn't life threatening unless you give Tylenol to a kid, which can produce something called Rye's Syndrome. The vaccine has problems, so chicken pox, on balance, is a safer bet I think. But to answer your question: yes it could be, but it might also be something else.
K.V. answers from Portland on November 19, 2008
Hi J., this happened to my daughter in August. It could be Pityraisis Rosea, it has the appearance of Chicken pox and is non contagious and can last up to 6 weeks. It is viral and really there is nothing to get rid of it. If your son still has this for a week, I would suggest taking him to a pediatric dermatologist, that was the only way we got a proper diagnosis as our ped wasnt sure if it was chicken pox or not either. You can look up Pityraisis Rosea on the internet. They post pictures as well as what it looks like. Good luck! I know how frustrating this can be.
A.H. answers from San Francisco on November 18, 2008
It might be a viral rash. This spring my son had cold symptoms with a rash that started on his mid section. The pediatrician explained that it was his immune system's response to the virus he had. The treatment was benadryl/calamine lotion. I'd recommend seeking a second opinion esp if it gets worse.
J.E. answers from Sacramento on November 19, 2008
I had the exact same thing happen! My 3 year old was immunized when he was around 1 and then my 1 year old had just been recently immunized and about a week later I saw spots on my 3 year old's belly and it definitely looked like chickenpox. When I called the advice nurse she assured me that my 3 year old didn't get chickenpox from the 1 year old who was recently vaccinated and she seemed to think it was unlikely that he had chickenpox himself. I waited 2 days and they didn't get better so went to the dr. He didn't have a fever or feel icky which I think is usually associated with chicken pox. He felt totally fine and the bumps didn't itch. She diagnosed him with folliculitis (and also mentioned that some people get this from hot tubs so I'm thinking your dr was talking about the same thing). My son doesn't go in hot tubs but if you google folliculitis you'll see that it is from a common bacteria and if he goes to preschool he could definitely pick it up there. It is a bacterial infection of the hair follicle and is pretty common. If it isn't bad they don't do anything but my son's was pretty bad so she prescribed antibiotics which cleared it right up. It then came back again about a week later (we weren't super consistent with the antibiotics because we kept forgetting to bring it to preschool because he had to take it 3 times a day). She then prescribed an antibiotic cream which worked overnight. I am not one to jump on the antibiotic bandwagon when it isn't warranted but if it is folliculitis the antibiotics will clear it up quickly. I just reread your post and saw that your son does have a fever so maybe it is different than my son's issue but anyway I thought I'd throw in another possibility for you. My dr was sure it wasn't chicken pox because of the way the bumps looked - they weren't crusting over. Good luck!
E.G. answers from Stockton on November 19, 2008
It is chickenpox-a mild form. In getting the immunization, he received a small amount of the chicken pox strain. this is not uncommon and I am very surprised that your Dr. didn't tell you this.
To make him feel better you could go to your local health food store and get some lysine cream to put on the spots.
As for other hobbies, I love making the fleece tied blankets. It is a fun, very quick thing to do. You get satisfaction quickly. and with 2 children at home, I am sure your time is limited.
I am a Dr. of Natural Health and own a health food store and I often see what is happening with your son.
If you have any other questions, you are welcome to email be back.
L.G. answers from San Francisco on November 19, 2008
Could it possibly be the rash Roseola? That is a rash on the tummy, but it usually follows a couple days of high fever first. My daughter had that and it cleared on its own after a few days. My daughter had chicken pox at 9 months, before being given the vaccine. And they were everywhere! I don't know what they would look like on a child that had already had the vaccine.
T.T. answers from Sacramento on November 19, 2008
It could be poison oak. Everytime my son gets poison oak he gets a fever and a sore throat, usually ends up with tonsilitis due to the poison oak. You can try some cortizone cream if his spots are itchy and childrens motrin for the fever and sore throat. Good Luck!
G.B. answers from San Francisco on November 21, 2008
My children were all vaccinated for Whooping cough, but when I contracted it, they all got a slight case of it.
My daughter had an itchy red bumpy rash around her belly (button area) , it turned out she was allergic to the knickel in the snap of her clothes.