Measles Rash Causes Treatment

Measles Rash : Causes, Picture, Symptoms and Treatment

Measles rash occurs due to an infection that mostly affects children. Your children can get affected by the rash due to viral infection. Once upon a time, the common disease was the main cause of death in children. But, the recent advances in the medical field have allowed scientists to come up with vaccination to prevent the disease and subsequent rash. The problem also referred to as rubeola, red measles, or 10-day measles can cause the infamous rash. The rash or skin eruption has a distinct appearance, which helps with the diagnosis of the problem. In some countries around the world, the failure to get vaccinated results in the disease. It is the disease that can kill children. So, around the globe, it kills more than a hundred thousand people, mostly under the age of five.

The fatal disease is distinguished by the rash that lasts for than three days. The rash also known as exanthem is highly contagious. It can spread from one infected child to another person. The virus can stay in the air for more than two hours. So, even after the affected person leaves the room, you can catch the virus infection. It mostly affects people who have not received vaccination for measles. The number of death cases due to measles has reduced considerably in the years due to the vaccination. But, you need to know more information about it to prevent it from affecting your life. Read ahead to know more about the measles rash.

What Is Measles Rash?

Rubeola or measles is the infection caused by a virus that affects your respiratory system. It is mostly distinguished from other problem due to the appearance of the measles rash. The virus classified as a Morbillivirus triggers the infection. In most people, it affects during the spring and winter season. The disease is contagious as it can spread through the infected person’s saliva and mucus. When the infected person coughs or sneezes, they can release the virus into the air. As the measles virus has the capability to live on the surface for many hours, others can become infected. So, anyone within the close proximity of the infected person has a high risk of getting the problem themselves. A person infected by the disease can transfer it other for 4 days before the measles rash appears and until 4 days after the rash becomes visible on the body.

490px Rash of rubella on back crop

So, you need to maintain caution. Drinking from the same glass or sharing utensils with a person affected by the disease puts you at risk of infection. You and your children need to take the problem seriously. Measles is one of the major cause of child death around the world. It mostly affects people who have received vaccination for the disease. Therefore, contact your doctor immediately if you suspect the problem. People who have not received the vaccination and have come in contact with infected person need to visit their doctor. Getting the measles vaccination within 72 hours of coming in contact with the virus can prevent the infection in your body. Your doctor can also provide you with a dose of immunoglobulin to prevent the issue. Therefore, seek medical help as soon as possible to prevent unwanted complications.

Symptoms Of Measles Rash

The symptoms may not appear overnight after getting affected by the virus. It mostly takes between 8 to 12 days for the infected person to develop symptoms. In most cases, the affected child is contagious for at least one or two days before any visible signs appear. So, the child becomes contagious even before knowing they have a viral infection. It makes the infection dangerous. Most signs associated with the disease appear within fourteen days (2 weeks) of exposure to the virus. It often causes the following signs:


The widespread measles rash indicates the disease. It is the first visible sign that indicates some problem. The rash appears within three to five days of exposure to the virus. So, you can see a reddish color deep and flat rash on the skin. It starts on the face and gradually spreads to arms, trunks, and legs. The rash appears as bumps that cause itching. It mostly starts as small lesion that is distinctive in appearance. But, several small lesions combine to form a big rash. It can last up to seven days. But, the rash will start to clear after the third day and leave brown color on your skin. You can also see skin peeling when it starts disappearing.

Other Signs

Apart from the rash, the disease also triggers several other signs in your body. So, you can see the following problems:

If you see the following signs in you or your child, contact your doctor immediately. With better medical care, you can ease the symptoms and prevent the complications associated with the disease.

People At Risk Of Measles Rash

Not everyone can get a viral infection and subsequent rash. Only some people are more at risk of the problem compared to others.

Unvaccinated Children

The number of measles cases has gone down around the world due to vaccinations. The immunization protects you from getting the viral infection. But, it does not mean the complete elimination of the disease from the face of the earth. The disease still poses risk to people. If you have not obtained vaccination, then you are susceptible to the infection. Many people chose not to vaccinate their children due to the myths of side effects associated with it. But, the immunization poses no risk to the children or adults. Only rare cases of side-effects occur due to vaccination. The possibility of getting serious side effects remains one out of a million doses of vaccination. Therefore, you can get the vaccination without any fear of side-effects.

Vitamin A Deficiency

Young children are more at risk of getting measles rashes. It is particularly high for children who face vitamin A deficiency. So, children with low vitamin A in their diets can catch the virus.

Measles Rash Diagnosis

In most cases, your doctor can detect the rash and its underlying cause by assessing it. So, the following diagnostic techniques can reveal the problem.

Skin Assessment

The doctor checks your rash by examining the skin. Your doctor can also ask about the different signs you suffer due to the issue. The symptoms like the appearance of white spots on your mouth along with the rash indicate the viral infection.

Blood Tests

The measles rash looks similar to other rashes due to German measles (rubella) and roseola. In such cases, your doctor can order a blood test. With the blood test, your doctor can come to a definite conclusion.

Treatment For Measles Rash

You have no specific medication to treat measles rash completely. Your doctor can only suggest medications to offer you relief from the signs. It also prevents the infection from escalating. Once the effect of viral attack subsides, the rash clears on its own. But, people who feel they have come in contact with the measles virus can opt for some preventive steps. The other medications focus on providing relief from the symptoms.

Prevent Rash After Exposure

Your doctor can suggest two steps to prevent the measles rash from affecting your skin once you get exposed to the virus. People who have come in contact with infected people can take the preventive measure. So, the steps can reduce the severity of the problem.

Post-Exposure Vaccination

If you no immunization against the measles, then your doctor can suggest it. You need to take the measles vaccination within 72 hours of coming in contact with the measure virus. Therefore, the post-exposure vaccination offers you protection against the disease. Even if you develop the disease, the vaccination can ensure you have only mild symptoms. The disease also lasts for a shorter duration of time.

Immune Serum Globulin

Your doctor suggests it for people with a weak immune system. So, infants and pregnant women can opt for it to avoid serious complication due to measles. The doctor injects antibodies or the injection of proteins in your body. The proteins, called immune serum globulin can make the symptoms appear mild or completely prevent the disease when given within six days of exposure to the virus. Therefore, you can reduce the severity of the measles rash with the antibodies when you become sure of the viral exposure.

Medications To Ease Symptoms

Your doctor can suggest prescription medications to avoid the symptoms associated with measles rash. The medication focusses on offering the children and affected person relief from the severe symptoms. Therefore, you cannot expect it to cure the problem completely. The following medicines can offer relief from the distress associated with the issue.

Fever Reducers

You can take medications to reduce fever. The over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen, acetaminophen, or naproxen can reduce the high temperature and associated distress. So, you can take the pills to get relief from the fever. But, never provide an aspirin to your child with measles symptoms. It is not advisable to take aspirin for flu-like symptoms or chickenpox. The aspirin is linked to a deadly condition known as Reye’s syndrome. It can cause fatal complications in children.


The measles can trigger infection. It can lead to ear infection or pneumonia. Therefore, you need antibiotics to reduce the complication due to infection. You or your child can take the antibiotics to reduce the effects of measles and further complications.

Vitamin A

Some people can have severe effects of measles rash due to the low levels of Vitamin A. Therefore, your doctor can reduce the severity of the rashes by giving Vitamin A doses. Large doses of the vitamin can ease your distress and agony. So, your doctor can suggest 200,000 IU (international units) for children above one year of age.

Home Remedies To Combat Measles Rash

Apart from talking to your doctor, you can adopt some home care remedies. It can ease your discomfort. But, remember along with the home remedies, you need to consult your doctor for regular monitoring. It will help detect the complications and ease the agony without any problem. Try these comfort measures to ease the severity of your measles rash.

Take Rest

Children and other people affected by the rash need to take it easy for a few days. Your child must avoid going to school. It will prevent the spreading of the contagious disease. Taking rest and avoiding busy activities will speed up healing.

Avoid Dehydration

You need to avoid dehydration due to the disease. Therefore, sip something to drink to overcome the fluid loss happening due to fever and sweating from the viral infection. You need to give your child fruit juice and water to replenish the fluid levels.

Respiratory Relief

The infection can cause a sore throat and cough. Therefore, you can seek respiratory relief by using a humidifier. It can loosen the mucus and offer you relief while breathing.

Give Rest To Your Eyes

The rash accompanies with light sensitivity. So, you or your child can find the light bothersome. To avoid the distress, wear sunglasses or keep the light low. Never strain your eyes by watching television or reading for a long duration of time. You can also use the drapes to prevent the lights from entering the room of your child. Therefore, you can avoid the light sensitivity by the techniques until you heal from the infection.

Complications Associated With Measles Rash

The rash in itself does not cause any problems. It can start fading once you heal from the disease. But, measles can trigger serious complications. Measles can also kill children affected by it. But, it happens only in one or two kids among the 1,000 affected. Measles needs your attention due to the potential long-term and life-altering complications.

Ear Infection

The disease can cause infection in your ear. It can lead to hearing loss.



The measles virus can cause inflammation of the bronchial tubes. The tubes are responsible for carrying the air to your lungs. Therefore, the problem can result in cough and generation of mucus. The problem can result in wheezing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath.

Miscarriage/Preterm Labor

Pregnant women who get affected by the measles virus can face serious issues. It can lead to preterm birth or stillbirth. But, it does not cause congenital defects in your child.



Measles can cause inflammation in your brain. So, it results in a condition known as encephalitis. It can trigger convulsions. The problem can also leave a child mentally retarded or completely deaf.

Severe Diarrhea

People affected by measles virus can suffer from diarrhea. The watery stools and loss of fluids can lead to dehydration.



The viral infection can also cause pneumonia in affected people. The infection can cause inflammation in your air sacs in one or both lungs. So, the air sacs fill with pus or fluid, which can trigger cough and shortness of breath.

Prevent Measles Rash

Measles rash can create severe distress. So, is there any method to prevent it? Yes, you can opt for effective methods to prevent the problem. Read about the methods you can adopt to prevent the problem.


It is the most effective option to prevent the measles rash and the disease outbreak. Getting the MMR (Measles Mumps Rubella) can avoid the infection even in children. The 3-in-one vaccination provided for children can also protect the kids from German measles and mumps. The children need to get the vaccination when they are one year old. Infants traveling internationally need to take the vaccination before 12 months. The children also need to take another dose of the vaccination between four and six years.


Adults who have not received the immunization can request the vaccination. The doctor can provide the vaccination to overcome the potential risk due to the viral infection. So, if you are traveling to a place with the risk of viral infection, then take the vaccination as a precautionary measure. Several people avoid vaccination in their childhood due to misconception. It is believed the vaccination causes autism. But, it has no scientific backing. No link exists with autism and immunization. Therefore, it is not true.

Avoid Contact

Avoiding contact with the infected patient is another important preventive measure. If you or people close to you contact the measles rash, then limit interaction. Limit your child’s or your social interaction. Therefore, stay at home and avoid going to school or office till your infection subsides.


Getting a measles rash can make anyone suffer. It comes along with pain and other signs that cause you distress. You need to get medical assistance to limit the complications associated with it. Healthy people can recover completely without side-effects with proper medical care and attention. People with weak immune system need to contact their doctor as soon as possible. It is due to the high risk associated with the infection. Take adequate steps to ensure your signs does not become worse or fatal. So, with appropriate care, you can reduce the severity of the problem and heal. But, once you recover from the infection, you become immune to the virus for life.

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