Sunday, March 16, 2008


“Oh my God! You have got chickenpox” my classmate exclaimed one morning, staring intently at the big rash on my cheek. “How do you know?” I asked in a stunned voice. “Well, my sister has it and I recognized the eruption by a mere glance” he replied confidently, too confident for comfort. Taking a cue from him, I rushed off to the school clinic where the doctor confirmed that it was chickenpox. “Phew! Why me? Why not me?” I thought quietly to myself as I listened to the doctor’s prescription. “It is a virus infection, it has to play its full course” He started off.

Chickenpox is a contagious viral disease that causes fever, pain, mild constitutional disturbances and rashes that leaves spots on the skin. I had it for only a few days which seem like months- but it had me really depressed because it confined me to a spot due to the recommended quarantine after rashes appear to avoid infecting others! Moreover, these rashes comes out on the face, scalp, shoulders and other places imaginable… so tell me who wants to walk around covered with such eruptions? Not to mention the persisting fever the chicken pox is characterized by!

Chickenpox is not so much of a dangerous disease, it can however be threatening in persons with defective immune response due to other diseases. Chickenpox I learnt is caused by Varicella-Zoster virus which also causes herpes Zoster called shingles, a painful skin rash. After chickenpox, the virus remains alive but dormant in peripheral nerves. Okay, enough of the vibes, for more information, consult your doctor!

I used to think Chickenpox was more of a child-age disease until I discovered even adults can be infected too. Indeed, most adults are immune to Chickenpox except for those who have never had it. So there! That was the reason why I was prone to it- because I have never had it and probably picked it up unknowingly from an infected person in the bus or on the street.

Now I have recovered fully, with the spots to show off as a living proof, I am also surprised to hear from friends that their neighbors, friends or family member is also recovering from the same illness. A few times recently, I have also seen young adults and children alike covered with spots. I can’t help but wonder if this is a chickenpox season or is there an outbreak we do not know about? As you are reading this, you probably know of someone who is infected too! Well, if you have never been infected, boost up your immune system to stay healthy so you don’t fall prey.

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