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Karel1, Certified Respiratory Therapist
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 565
Experience:  Have suffered with Narcolepsy a sleeping disorder over 30 years,specializes in asthma ,COPD
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Customer Question

About two weeks ago, I developed a rash. It was around my armpits, my breasts, inner thighs, on my neck, and appeared to be small spots merging into rather angry-looking red marks. I thought it may be german measles, so looked it up on the internet to check symptoms. The basic description seemed to only really concern children and said that it is a mild problem,except with pregnant women. It also seemed to be a short illness ("three day measles"). I am 57, and I have not had this before. It has now been going for around two weeks, and seems to be getting worse. It is over a fair proportion of my body and spreading, I feel "down", incredibly tired and I want to sleep all the time, I have pains in my joints (especially fingers, elbows and shoulders), I have some kind of eye irritation and I feel ill all the time. My throat feels so sore, almost raw and I feel itchy and sore, even in my ears. I have also had a sore chest and after all the spots have mingled into large red patches they become very dry and hurt a lot (feels like burning and itchy at the same time and actually the patches look like burns). Can you confirm that it is german measles and that it's severity is due to my age, or is it something I should be more concerned about?

Thank you
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. David replied 3 years ago.

Dr. David :

Hello. I'm sorry to hear that you are having these symptoms. Viral infections such as German Measles are typically more problematic for adults than they are for infants. Infants can go through German Measles in a few days, but adults usually take around a week to get through it. There are other kinds of viral infections that can cause similar symptoms as well. For example, a "Shingles" outbreak can have the symptoms that you described. Actually, I think that your probable diagnosis is "Shingles" which is caused by the Varicella virus rather than German Measles. It takes 2 to 4 weeks to get through a Shingles outbreak. If you feel that you are getting worse after having these symptoms for two weeks, it would be a good idea to be seen by a doctor to confirm the diagnosis of Shingles. Dr. David

Expert:  Karel1 replied 3 years ago.
At your age you definitely need to see an md, to get on medications, antiviral such as valtrex and prednisone for the joint pains. My mom just came down with it. If its shingles you can have permanent damage such as herpatic neuralgia which all the nerve endings in your body are inflamed which is why you can have the joint pain and it can be severe.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Can you describe the symptoms of shingles? The ones I am suffering seem to indicate german measles, and I was not aware of shingles acting like this. For instance,m I thought that shingles only affected one side of the body.

Expert:  Dr. David replied 3 years ago.

You are correct that Shingles usually affects only one side of the body, however in severe cases it can occur on both sides. The symptom that makes it sound most like Shingles is the sensation you described as "burning and itchy". Shingles often has this sensation associated with it. Shingles can affect the eyes and perhaps the throat, though it does not typically affect the joints.


Certainly it is possible that you indeed have German Measles, Measles, or some other viral infection. It is even possible that you are having a bacterial infection. For example, a Strep infection could explain all of your symptoms as well.


Even with a physical examination, it may not be possible to make an exact diagnosis. My concern for you is that you have been feeling worse instead of better after two weeks of having these symptoms. So I believe that it would be in your best interest to have a physical examination and perhaps a blood test to rule out other possible conditions.

Expert:  Karel1 replied 3 years ago.

Shingles represents chicken pox more so than measles, It does not have to affect one side of the body. see the attached links for pictures of shingles. I am responding to this because I was sent and email as well to answer this question. However Dr. David is the one whom you should give the good rating to so he can get paid. since he was on this question with you first



Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Looking at the pictures and description of shingles, the rash does not match at all. The rash is flat/spots, and certainly not blisters. It does not follow nerve paths, but is in various areas all over the body. It looks far more like web pix of german measles, but it appears to have gone on for far too long. Does it never last longer than a week or so, even in adults?


During the last few days, there have been visual disturbances ("fogging") which seems in line with conjunctival effects. There is also a rash starting on the eyelids, which I am very worried about.


A doctor seems to think it is fungal, but it seems to have spread far too quickly for that. Are there any fungal infections that spread comparatively quickly and extensively and that may match the appearance and symptoms described? Unfortunately, the doctor, in common with many others, seems averse to explanation, seeming to think that if you can't spell trichophyton mentagrophytes, you have no right to ask.


Many thanks

Expert:  Karel1 replied 3 years ago.
tHE VISUAL disturbances and fogginess can be side effect from shingles. You should go to an opthalmologist to check to see if the virus has not hit the eye. The rashes can or cannot be present yet you still can have the virus. You tend to sound exactly like the symptoms my mom has who has just been diagnosed with shingles, and placed on steroid therapy, but now needs to see an opthalmologist just to make sure there is no eye infection. I definitely think you need to see an opthamologist as well as your md.

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