Tests and diagnosis

By Mayo Clinic Staff

There's no specific test available to diagnose Kawasaki disease. Diagnosis largely is a process of ruling out diseases that cause similar signs and symptoms, including:

  • Scarlet fever, which is caused by streptococcal bacteria and results in fever, rash, chills and sore throat
  • Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
  • Stevens-Johnson syndrome, a disorder of the mucous membranes
  • Toxic shock syndrome
  • Measles
  • Certain tick-borne illnesses, such as Rocky Mountain spotted fever

The doctor may do a physical examination and have your child take other tests to help in the diagnosis. These tests may include:

  • Urine tests. These tests help rule out other diseases.
  • Blood tests. Besides helping to rule out other diseases, blood tests look at white blood cell count, which is likely to be elevated, and the presence of anemia and inflammation, indications of Kawasaki disease.
  • Electrocardiogram. This test uses electrodes attached to the skin to measure the electrical impulses of your child's heartbeat. Kawasaki disease can cause heart rhythm complications.
  • Echocardiogram. This test uses ultrasound images to show how well the heart is functioning and provides indirect evidence on how the coronary arteries are functioning.
Feb. 15, 2014