Hand, foot, and mouth disease is a contagious viral disease that is most often seen in preschool-age children. Read more...
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What is hand, foot, and mouth disease?
Hand, foot, and mouth disease is a contagious viral disease that is most often seen in preschool-age children. It is caused most commonly by Coxsakievirus A16 and enterovirus, however other viruses have also been associated with outbreaks. There is usually about a 3-day period of time when kids will have a low-grade fever, be a little irritable, and have a sore throat. It can start off like any other virus. However, then a rash breaks out as small painful vesicles that break open quickly in the mouth and make it uncomfortable to eat, and often kids will start drooling. The hands and feet, especially on the sides of the fingers will break out in small vesicles with a pink halo around them. About half the cases will also have lesions on the buttocks. No treatment is necessarily required as it tends to last about a week before resolving.
How is hand, foot, and mouth disease spread?
This is a communicable disease which means it spreads in one of four ways:- skin to skin contact- saliva (sharing drinks for example)- airborne (through coughs or sneezes)- virus is shed in feces so washing hands after going to the restroom is also important to reduce spread.