Although more common in children, Dr. Centilli notes the virus is sometimes diagnosed in adults, too. Some adult patients, especially women, experience extended periods of joint pain and swelling, though it typically goes away without long-term problems.
She notes it’s important for pregnant women who believe they may have been infected with Fifth disease or exposed to the virus to contact their OB-GYN or other qualified care provider. In rare instances, the infection can lead to anemia in the baby, which can increase a woman’s risk of miscarriage.
“There is no treatment for the illness among pregnant women, but a physician may require more prenatal visits, bloodwork and ultrasounds to keep a close eye on the unborn baby,” she says.