If a pregnant woman contracts rubella, the unborn child may have some severe problems that can be fatal in some cases. Approximately 80% of the babies whose mothers had rubella during the first trimester of pregnancy develop a condition known as congenital rubella syndrome. This can cause problems including
- Growth retardation
- Congenital heart defects
- Defects in other organs
- Intellectual disabilities
Rubella also causes Encephalitis (brain infection) in adults but this is extremely rare, 1 in 6000 cases. Blood problems including low platelet levels and hemorrhage have also been reported but these are also rare.