Setting your location helps us to show you nearby providers and locations based on your healthcare needs.
Your Location is set to Change My Location
Cone Health wants to help you get well and stay well. This section provides tools and information to achieve good health and maintain your well-being.
Learn what community resources are available to help you get well and stay well.
View health and wellness news you can use from Cone Health providers on
View Advanced Search OptionsView All Doctors
View All Locations
Home > Patient & Family Resources > Health Library > Smallpox
Committed to Safety: As we resume services, we are taking all necessary precautions to keep you safe while we care for you. Limited visitation is now in place. Review all our visitor policies and precautions. Get more information on COVID-19.
Smallpox is a potentially deadly infection caused by the variola virus. The infection causes severe illness, including a high fever, followed by a rash all over the body that looks like blisters.
Smallpox symptoms develop about 12 days after exposure. The disease usually is not contagious until the rash first appears. As scabs form, the chance of passing on the disease decreases.
Smallpox was a worldwide problem in the past. But because of a widespread vaccination program, it was declared eradicated (no longer a naturally occurring disease) by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1980.
There may be a risk that the smallpox virus could be stolen by people in order to threaten or harm others.
Current as of: February 11, 2020
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Christine Hahn, MD - Infectious Disease, Epidemiology
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2020 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Subscribe to our Wellness Matters e-newsletter, a monthly snapshot of the some of great wellness content from Cone Health providers.