About Chickenpox

What is chickenpox?

Chickenpox is a viral infection that’s more common in children than in adults. It causes fever and an itchy rash of small, raised blisters or crusted spots. Chickenpox usually isn’t serious in healthy children—they almost always get better with no problems. In people with a weak immune system, however chickenpox may be severe and life-threatening. Even after you get better, the chickenpox virus remains in your body. Years after you recover from chickenpox, the same virus can cause shingles, a painful rash of fluid-filled blisters.

How can you prevent chickenpox?

The chickenpox vaccine can help to prevent chicken pox. Most people who get the chickenpox vaccine develop immunity to chickenpox. If someone who has gotten the vaccine does get chickenpox, it’s usually very mild.

You can help to keep chickenpox from spreading to other people by getting the chickenpox vaccine; not going near someone who has chickenpox (if you’ve never had chickenpox) or by keeping children home from school until all blisters have crusted. For adults, you can help by staying home from work until all blisters have crusted.


Chickenpox Treatment and Prevention

For most children, chickenpox is mild and can be treated at home. Chickenpox can also be prevented with a vaccination. Chickenpox vaccination is not part of the routine childhood vaccination schedule in Ireland. The vaccine may not be suitable for people with certain medical conditions.

Patient information on chickenpox can be found at

IE-VVX-00008|Date of preparation: November 2019