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Hand, foot and mouth disease
Hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) is caused by a number of enteroviruses in the family Picornaviridae. The most common cause is the Coxsackie A virus. HFMD is not to be confused with Hoof-and-mouth disease, which is a disease affecting sheep, cattle and swine, and which is unrelated to HFMD (but also caused by a member of the Picornaviridae family).
HFMD usually affects infants and children, and is quite common. It is moderately contagious and is spread through direct contact with the mucus or feces of an infected person. It typically occurs in small epidemics in nursery schools or kindergartens, usually during the summer and autumn months.
Symptoms of HFMD include:
Not all symptoms may be present.
There is no specific treatment for hand, foot and mouth disease. Individual symptoms, such as fever, lameness and pain from the sores, may be eased with the use of medication. HFMD is a viral disease that has to run its course; many doctors do not issue medicine for this illness, unless the infection is severe. It is usually in the affected child's best interest to be kept home until the infection clears. Fever reducers will help to control high temperatures. Luke-warm baths will also help bring temperature down.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Hand,_foot_and_mouth_disease". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|