As a disease chicken pox is considered not to be very harmful to a healthy patient. Recent studies have although showed that it is the leading death bringer compared to measles, mumps, whooping cough and Haemophilus influenzae type B meningitis.
Some 14,000 people are admitted each year into hospitals for chickenpox, 60% of them being children. From 1000 individuals only 5 require hospitalization, and in the worst of cases this disease can prove to be fatal. The type of people witch are at the greatest risk of dying from this disease are actually adults, followed by infants, but from the 100 patients to die from chickenpox 40 were still children. A vaccine could be used to prevent all of these, however recent studies have shown that the number of patients is the same in hospitals.
One of the good aspects of the disease is the fact that it actually gives immunity to the body making the chance of getting ill again from this very slim. Aside from itching a few rare complications might appear in patients.
20% of people who have had chicken-pox might later on in their lives suffer from a reactivation of shingles.
Itching, being the most common complication of the varicella infection, can be easily alleviated with some simple home made remedies.
Secondary Infection and Scarring may also appear; small scars usually remain after the falling of the scabs but this doesn’t last long, the scars clearing up after a few month. In the case of itching there is an all other problem, Staphylococcus aureus or Streptococcus pyogenes bacteria sometimes causing infection in the patient. Children are the most in danger of this kind of complication because of the simple fact that they are more likely to scratch. Also in children another rare complication would be year infection leading sometimes to hearing loss.
Bacterial Superinfection is the most common serious complication of chickenpox being caused by group A streptococcus. Although mild and not very dangerous its spreading to muscle, fat or even the blood can lead to life threatening situations such as the necrotizing fasciitis (the so-called flesh-eating bacteria) but this is still very rare. Persistent or recurring high fever, redness, pain, and swelling in the skin and in the tissue beneath and even pneumonia are some of the symptoms. In the case of pneumonia the most likely people to suffer complications are pregnant women, smokers, and those with serious medical conditions, serious complications appearing in some cases caused by varicella: lung scaring that makes the patient’s breathing very difficult.
More complications would even be brain and central nervous system damage or even strokes, but as said they are extremely rare.