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Difference Between Smallpox and Chickenpox: What’s the Difference Between Smallpox and Chickenpox?

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What is the difference between smallpox and chickenpox? The major difference between small box and chickenpox can be the severity of this contagious disease. Are smallpox and chickenpox in the same family? These two poxes may sound or be understood as similar but are caused by two different viruses. Smallpox is caused by Variola Virus which is deadlier than the virus causing Varicella-Zoster. You can say it’s a milder version of the Variola virus.

Is smallpox worse than chickenpox? Both the diseases are contagious and cause blisters but yes, smallpox is considered t be more pernicious or fatal as compared to chickenpox. The internet is loaded with such related queries about smallpox and chickenpox which are often confused with each other as well, so our article is dedicated to all these queries and more related ones, let’s readout in the coming sections about- Difference Between Smallpox and Chickenpox.

What’s the Difference Between Smallpox and Chickenpox?

Yes, both these poxes are often assumed to be related or the same, but they are not. There may be some similarities in the symptoms, yet these two highly contagious diseases are very different from each other. Let’s understand the basic differences between smallpox and chickenpox through the below-listed easy-to-understand and compare table about smallpox and chickenpox.

Factors Smallpox Chickenpox
Virus causing it Variola Virus Varicella-Zoster
Severity Is more detrimental and fatal Mostly curable and less intense
Symptoms Rashes, Blisters and Fever, Body ache Rashes, Blisters, Fever, Fatigue, Body ache
Occurrence Mostly on the face, arms, and legs, and can even occur on the palms and soles of the Patient Mostly on the stomach, chest, and back
Vaccination Available Available
Lasts for 10-14 days 4 to 7 days
Extinct No cases reported since 1970, so extinct. 3-4 million cases on an average per year in the US.

Let’s read more in detail about each of these – Smallpox and chickenpox

What is Smallpox? Does smallpox still exist?

Smallpox is a contagious and death-dealing disease. It is caused by the Variola virus. The early-stage symptoms of smallpox include high fever, muscle sprains, back pain, vomiting, and headaches. After this stage, rashes occur on the body, tongue, or inside the mouth and then spreads to the arms, legs, back, sores and palms, and torso. The patient will get pus-filled bumps all over the body which will be turned into boils and then these boils in a time of two-three days dries into scabs and the scabs start shedding off the patient’s body after a week’s time approximately.

The good news is that since 1976, no case of smallpox has been reported and the disease is believed to be extinct. WHO has also declared that smallpox in been absolutely wiped out. In the past, smallpox has killed hundreds of millions of people, and thousands were left with its symptoms of scarring and even blindness.

What is Chicken Pox? Can I get chickenpox twice?

Chickenpox is a transmissible disease caused by the Varicella-zoster virus. The early-stage symptoms may include fatigue, headache, and fever and then the patient will develop very itchy, blisters or rashes initially on the chest, back, and face, and then all over the body. The disease can cause about 250 to 500 blisters filled with fluid. These blisters then become sores which then dries out to scabs.

Chickenpox takes about 4-7 days of time. Anyone can catch the chickenpox virus by coming in contact with the infected person. Vaccination of chickenpox is recommended for all and is believed to be 98% effective in preventing it. You may not be infected by the same virus again as your body gets immune to it but in rare cases, it may occur as well directly or in other forms like shingles.