How Did Chickenpox Get Its Name?

Print this page Bookmark and Share
Parents

How did chickenpox get its name?
- Martha

The name chickenpox has been around for centuries, and there are a number of theories as to how it got its name. One is that it's from the blisters that are seen with the illness. These red spots — which are about 1/5 inch to 2/5 inch (5mm to 10mm) wide — were once thought to look like chickpeas (garbanzo beans).

Another theory is that the rash of chickenpox looks like the peck marks caused by a chicken. But, in case you were wondering, chickenpox can't be caught from a chicken!

Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: July 2012



Related Resources

OrganizationImmunization Action Coalition This organization is a source of childhood, adolescent, and adult immunization information as well as hepatitis B educational materials.


Related Articles

Shingles Shingles isn't very common in kids - it mostly affects older people. Find out what causes shingles, symptoms to watch for, and what to do if your child has it.
Chickenpox It's most common in kids under age 12, but anyone can get chickenpox. The good news is that a vaccine can prevent most cases.




Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

© 1995-2014 The Nemours Foundation/KidsHealth. All rights reserved.



 

Upcoming Events

5k Run/Walk/Roll fundraiser for a universally accessible park

Car Seat Safety Check at Xenia Township Fire Station 51 on Brush Row Road

Car Seat Safety Check - no appointment necessary!

All parents, siblings and grandparents of students working with IEPs from preschool through high school are invited to hear the guest speaker from the Bureau for Children with Medical Handicaps.

View full event calendarView full event calendar

Health and Safety

Your child's health and safety is our top priority

Accreditations

The Children's Medical Center of Dayton Dayton Children's
The Right Care for the Right Reasons

One Children's Plaza - Dayton, Ohio - 45404-1815
937-641-3000
www.childrensdayton.org