Differences between chicken pox and small pox

Small poxChicken pox
Incubation period
(approximately)
12 days15 days
Prodromal symptomsSevereMild
Rash – sites affectedExtensor surfaces, palms, solesFlexor surfaces, axilla
Rash – featuresDeep seatedSuperficial
Single stage or rash present at a timeMultiple stages of rash at the same time (pleomorphic)
Multilocular, umbilicated vesiclesUnilocular vesicles, classically ‘dew drop on rose petal’
No inflammation around rashZone of inflammation present around rash
Rash – evolutionSlow, all stages are visibleFast evolution of rash
Scab formation by 10-14 days of disappearance of rashScab formation by 4-7 days of disappearance of rash
FeverFever subsides with development of rash,
may appear again with formation of pustules
(secondary rise of temperature)
Fever occurs with each crop of vesicles

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