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Dr. Gupta
Dr. Gupta, Board Certified Pediatrician
Category: Paediatrics
Satisfied Customers: 1391
Experience:  MD, practicing Pediatrician. Member American Academy of Pediatrics.
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My 5yr old son, and 3yr old daughter had chicken poxs 4weeks

Customer Question

My 5yr old son, and 3yr old daughter had chicken poxs 4weeks ago, now my 10yr old niece has got them, can my son and daughter catch chicken poxs again?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Paediatrics
Expert:  Dr. Leah replied 2 years ago.
Hello and thank you for your question. No, your son and daughter will not catch the "chicken pox" more than once. Once they have the primary infection, they develop antibodies that protect them from getting it again in the future. In the future, however, they will be prone to developing "shingles," also known as a varicella zoster infection. This occurs because the varicella (chicken pox) virus lays dormant in the nerves of the skin after the primary infection resolves. The virus can reactivate at times of stress or decreased immunity. It is most common for this to occur after age 60 year old, but it can occasionally occur in young adults and children.
Expert:  Dr. Leah replied 2 years ago.
Also, because immunity to future infection will develop in your son and daughter, there is no need for them to receive the varicella vaccine. They should, however, receive the varicella zoster vaccine later on in life when it is age appropriate.
Expert:  Dr. Leah replied 2 years ago.
I see that you are still offline. If you have further questions when you return online, feel free to ask.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

My son had also had chicken poxs when he was 15 months old and now again at 5yr, so can my 3yr old daughter catch them again from my niece, bearing inmind she was covered from head to toe wear my son wasn't, should I stay away from my niece?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

My daughter was covered from head to toe, it was the first time she had chicken poxs but my don had them at 10months old and now again at 5yrs, my niece is covered in chicken poxs and this is the second time she's had them, can my son and daughter re catch them again due to them only recovering from chicken poxs 4weeks ago?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

My daughter was covered from head to toe, it was the first time she had chicken poxs but my son had them at 10months old and now again at 5yrs, my niece is covered in chicken poxs and this is the second time she's had them, can my son and daughter re catch them again due to them only recovering from chicken poxs 4weeks ago? As I am very worried about them catching chicken poxs again.

Expert:  Dr. Leah replied 2 years ago.
Hello. The reason your son developed a second case of chicken pox is because the initial infection was prior to 1 years old. The immune system is unable to mount a proper antibody response under 1 years old, which is also why the vaccine is not administered prior to that age. Now your son is older, with his current case, he should develop enough protective antibodies to prevent a third case. Because your daughter has the infection at an older age as well, she should also be protected by the antibodies she is developing now. Since your daughter already has the chicken pox, she will not "catch them again" from your niece.
Expert:  Dr. Leah replied 2 years ago.
I would, however, avoid contact of your son, daughter, or your niece with any other non-vaccinated children to prevent further spread of this infection. The chicken pox lesions are contagious until all of them have formed a "crust."