Santa Barbara County reports school-related chickenpox

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. (AP) — Santa Barbara County health officials say there have been five confirmed cases of chickenpox and one case of shingles associated with a school.

A Public Health Department statement Thursday says the majority of confirmed cases were in children who were not vaccinated.

The department says people with compromised immune systems or who are pregnant or not immunized are being informed.

Chickenpox and shingles are caused by the same virus, which spreads easily through coughing, sneezing, touching or breathing.

The chickenpox illness typically lasts five to 10 days, with symptoms including a rash, blisters and scabs that spread over the body.

Serious complications can require hospitalization and sometimes cause death.

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