From WikiLectures

Rubella or rubeola (rubella or German measles) is a viral infectious exanthema disease . It is caused by the rubella virus, which is mainly transmitted by droplets. It enters the body through the mucous membrane of the nasopharynx and causes a disease with a usually mild course. When a pregnant woman is infected, the virus spreads through the placenta to the fetus and causes a severe syndrome of congenital rubella, characterized in particular by severe impairment of vision, hearing and the development of congenital heart defects.

Caution! In English the term rubeola' means measles' (also measles, morbilli).

Rubella virus[edit | edit source]

  • genus Rubivirus, family Matonaviridae (formerly family Togaviridae);
  • single-stranded RNA virus;
  • the host is only human.

Epidemiology[edit | edit source]

The reported occurrence of rubella in the Czech Republic in the years 2005–2009 is 4–14 cases per year, i.e. 0.1 patients per 100 000 population per year.[1] The source of infection is man, with clinically manifest and clinically silent forms of rubella, from the end of the incubation period to the 7th day after the appearance of the rash.[2] A child with congenital rubella can also be a source of infection - it sheds the virus many months to years after birth. [2]

Clinical Manifestations[edit | edit source]

The incubation period of the disease is 15-20 days, with an average of 17 days.[3] The infection is spread by ``droplet infection or ``transplacentally. The disease manifests itself as a maculopapular non-confluent rash that starts on the face and spreads from there to the whole body, being less pronounced on the limbs. On the mucous membrane of the palate, enanthema to small petechiae, the so-called Forscheimer's spots, may be present. The rash is accompanied by swelling of the suboccipital' and retroauricular lymph nodes[3]

Infection in pregnancy[edit | edit source]

Infection of the mother in the first 4 months' of pregnancy causes miscarriage or the development of developmental defects of the fetus. The risk of damage to the fetus decreases with the length of pregnancy. The fetus is most at risk if the mother has rubella in the first trimester.[2]

Gregg syndrome (congenital rubella syndrome)[edit | edit source]

'Congenitally acquired rubella is manifested by the emergence of the so-called Gregg's syndrome:

If a pregnant woman is exposed to infection in the first trimester' and does not have protective antibodies, it is recommended to repeat the serological examination in 2-3 weeks and recommend a genetic consultation if antibodies develop.[4]Risk of disability of the fetus is important in this situation, as part of the genetic consultation it is thus possible to offer the pregnant woman artificial termination of pregnancy.

Complications[edit | edit source]

Possible complications of rubella include: arthritis affecting rather small joints more often in women, [2] encephalitis, thrombocytopenia and myocarditis.

Diagnostics[edit | edit source]

  • clinical (exanthema, lymphadenopathy, epidemiological history);[2]
  • serology; ELISA
  • 'direct evidence of virus in blood, urine and nasopharyngeal secretions.[4]
CRITERION Measles Rubella
Differential diagnosis of measles and rubella
Incubation period ⌀ 10 days ⌀ 18 days
Temperature febrile subfebrile
Exanthem raised, confluent, deep red flat, non-confluent, pink (to purplish)
Sowing behind the ears → nape of the neck → trunk and limbs face → torso and limbs
Swollen nodes submandibular nuchal
Typical symptom Koplik's spots' (gray macules; buccal mucosa in stool area) Forschheimer spots (enanthema/petechiae on the palate)
Fetal damage not Yes

Treatment[edit | edit source]

Treatment is only symptomatic, i.e. based on alleviating difficulties. There is no causal treatment. It is important to isolate the sick from the susceptible population. [2]

Vaccination[edit | edit source]

As part of regular vaccination, the MMR vaccine' is given, which contains ``weakened viruses of measles, mumps and rubella ( measles, mumps, rubella). The first dose is given after the child is fifteen months old. Re-vaccination is carried out 6 to 10 months' after the basic vaccination has been carried out. = Vakcí|year = 2009|revision_date = 23/03/2009|cited = 20/07/2009|url =}}</ref>

History window[edit | edit source]

Congenital rubella syndrome was first described by the Australian ophthalmologist Sir Norman McAlister Gregg in the early 1940s, when he related the increased incidence of congenital cataracts in children of mothers who had rubella during pregnancy. The rubella virus was isolated in the early 1960s. This discovery enabled the development of laboratory diagnostics of rubella. In the years 1963 - 1965, there was a rubella epidemic in Europe and subsequently in the USA, accompanied by a high incidence of congenital rubella syndrome. These devastating consequences of the rubella epidemic were the motivation for the development of a vaccine. As early as the late 1960s, a rubella vaccine (live, attenuated) was developed and registered, which subsequently became part of the MMR vaccine. Rubella vaccination was started in the US for young children, while in Britain it was for teenage girls. Neither strategy led to a sufficient reduction in the circulation of the virus in the population, so both countries proceeded to general vaccination of children and targeted vaccination of teenage girls and adult women.[5]

Source[edit | edit source]

  • Jiří Beneš. . Infekční lékařství. - vydání. 2009. 651 s. ISBN 9788072626441.
  • Rozsypal, Hanuš. . Základy infekčního lékařství. - vydání. Charles University in Prague, Karolinum Press, 2015. 572 s. ISBN 8024629321.

Reference[edit | edit source]

  1. State Institute of Health. Selected infectious diseases in the Czech Republic in the years 2000-2009 [online]. ©2010. [cit. 2010-08-15]. <>.
  2. a b c d e f g BENEŠ, George, et al. Infectious Diseases. 1. edition. Prague : Galen, 2009. 651 pp. ISBN 978-80-7262-644-1.
  3. a b LISSAUER, – CLAYDEN, Graham. Illustrated Textbook of Paediatrics. 3. edition. Spain : Elsevier, 2007. pp. 227. ISBN 978-07234-3398-9.
  4. a b c KELBLEROVÁ, Aneta. Infectious exanthema diseases in childhood. Pediatrics for practice [online]2009, vol. 10, p. 176-179, Available from <https://www.>. ISSN 1803-5264. 
  5. PLOTKIN, Stanley A.. The History of Rubella and Rubella Vaccination Leading to Elimination. Clinical Infectious Diseases. 2006, y. Supplement_3, vol. 43, p. S164-S168, ISSN 1537-6591. DOI: 10.1086/505950.

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