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Chickenpox - Chickenpox Epidemiology Chickenpox is an...

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Chickenpox Epidemiology Chickenpox is an endemic condition seen throughout the year but more commonly in winter and early spring. It is one of the classic diseases of childhood, with the highest prevalence in the 4-10 age group. Chickenpox is rare in preschool children. It is highly communicable, with an infection rate of 90% in close contacts. 90% of people pick up the infection in childhood but 10& of adults remain susceptible. Diagnosis Chickenpox is usually a spot diagnosis. A history of close contact with other individuals with chickenpox as well as a prodrome of fever, malaise and myalgia is usually enough to make a diagnosis. Chickenpox has a central distribution, which classically differentiates it from the naturally eradicated virus Smallpox. If a definitive diagnosis is required - Vesicular fluid can be examined with a Tsanck smear, or examined for direct fluorescent antibody. The fluid can also be "cultured", whereby attempts are made to grow the virus from a fluid sample. Blood tests can be used to identify a response to acute infection (IgM) or previous
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