Also known as German measles or three-day measles, rubella is an illness that is caused by an infection with a specific virus. It typically lasts for about three days and may cause joint pain and swelling, fever, headache, and a rash.
Although rubella is typically a mild illness, when the disease occurs in pregnant women, it can pose a serious threat to the developing fetus. Since there is currently no treatment that can kill the virus, treatment focuses on providing relief of symptoms as the body fights the infection.
(For more detailed information on this disease, including when a person is most contagious, click Rubella.)