Understanding Sixth Disease: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

Understanding Sixth Disease: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

If you are a parent, you may have heard of Sixth Disease, a viral infection that is common among young children. Also known as Roseola or Exanthema Subitum, this illness is usually not serious, but it’s essential to be aware of its symptoms, causes, and treatment.


Sixth Disease is a common condition among children that can cause fever and rashes. It’s caused by the Human Herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6) or Human Herpesvirus 7 (HHV-7). Although it affects children aged 6 months to 3 years, it’s not unusual to find it in children up to 5 years of age. In this article, we will discuss Sixth Disease’s symptoms, causes, and treatment.

Symptoms of Sixth Disease

The symptoms of Sixth Disease are usually mild and can go unnoticed. It starts with a sudden high fever lasting up to five days, followed by a rash. The rash appears after the fever subsides, and it’s usually pink or red in color with small flat spots. The rash may spread across the body, but it’s not itchy.

Other symptoms may include:

– Irritability
– Swollen lymph nodes
– Runny nose
– Lack of appetite

If your child experiences any of these symptoms, schedule an appointment with a pediatrician.

Causes of Sixth Disease

As mentioned earlier, Sixth Disease is caused by the Human Herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6) or Human Herpesvirus 7 (HHV-7). Both HHV-6 and HHV-7 are common viruses that are transmitted from person to person through saliva or respiratory secretions. Children who attend daycare or have close contact with others are more likely to catch the virus.

Treatment of Sixth Disease

Since Sixth Disease is a viral infection, it cannot be treated with antibiotics. The treatment is mainly symptomatic, such as:

– Giving the child plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration
– Using fever-reducing medication, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen
– Applying a cool, damp cloth to help reduce fever
– Keeping the child comfortable and monitoring for any complications

It’s essential to consult a pediatrician before giving any medication to your child.


Sixth Disease is a common viral infection among young children that is usually not serious. Although the symptoms can be alarming, monitoring the child’s fever and offering plenty of fluids and medication can help alleviate discomfort. If you suspect your child has Sixth Disease, schedule an appointment with a pediatrician for proper diagnosis and treatment.


American Academy of Pediatrics. (2019, February 12). Roseola (Sixth Disease). HealthyChildren.org. https://www.healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/conditions/skin/Pages/Roseola- (Sixth-Disease).aspx

Johns Hopkins Medicine. (n.d.). Roseola. https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/roseola

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *