Rubella is a contagious viral disease, which occurs most often in children. The virus is transmitted via the respiratory route, and symptoms usually appear 2–3 weeks after exposure. In children, the disease is usually mild, with low fever, nausea and a transient rash. Adults may develop arthritis and painful joints.
Infection during early pregnancy may cause fetal death or congenital rubella syndrome, which is characterized by multiple defects, particularly to the brain, heart, eyes and ears. There is no specific treatment for rubella. The disease can be prevented by immunization.