General Illness Information
HAND, FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE
Medical Term: COXSACKIE VIRUS A-16 INFECTION
Description: It is a viral illness presenting with ulcers in the mouth and water blisters or red spots on palms, soles of feet and in groin and buttock area.
Mainly occurs in children from 6 months to 4 years.
Causes: Coxsackie Virus A-16 Infection
Prevent exposure of infants and young children to anyone with a respiratory illness. Incubation period is 3 to 6 days.
Signs & Symptoms
- Sudden fever;
- Sore throat with blisters and ulcers in the mouth and throat lining;
- Rash with blisters on the hands, feet and groin;
- Appetite loss;
- Abdominal pain (sometimes).
Summer and fall seasons.
Diagnosis & Treatment
- This disorder has a mild course and the child can be cared for at home;
- Boil eating utensils and other items that touch the mouth of saliva or use disposable utensils to avoid transmitting the disease;
- Boil bottle nipples separately for 20 minutes before sterilizing formula in bottles.
To reduce high fever or for pain, you may use non-prescription drugs such as acetaminophen. Antibiotics are not effective against this disease.
- Keep the child in bed until fever and other symptoms disappear. Normal activities may be resumed gradually;
- Avoid citrus, salty, spicy foods;
- Avoid foods that need much chewing;
- Offer soft diet – custard, gelatin, ice cream;
- Encourage plenty of clear fluids eg. cold drinks, popsicles, sherberts;
- Have the child rinse mouth with warm water after meals.
Possible Complications :
Dehydration from child refusing fluids.
- Spontaneous recovery;
- Fever and discomfort last for 3-4 days;
- Mouth ulcers resolve in 7 days.