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Health Tip: If Your Child Gets Chicken Pox

Never give him aspirin

(HealthDay News) -- Chicken pox is a highly contagious viral disease that mostly affects children younger than age 10.

Someone with chicken pox typically is covered with itchy, fluid-filled blisters that burst and form crusts. Children with the disease are usually sent home from school for about a week.

While antiviral medicines may help alleviate symptoms, the benefit these medicines give may not outweigh their considerable cost, the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM) says.

In most cases, any treatment should keep children comfortable while letting their bodies fight the disease on their own, the agency says. An antihistamine can help ease the itching, as can a topical lotion.

The NLM warns that a child with chicken pox should never be given aspirin, which has been associated with a deadly condition called Reyes syndrome among chicken pox patients.

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