Topic: Diseases & Conditions
This handout was written to answer some of the questions most often asked about hand, foot and mouth disease. Feel free to ask your doctor or nurse to explain any information that you do not understand.
WHAT IS HAND, FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE?
Hand, foot and mouth disease is a common illness of infants and children. It begins with a mild fever, poor appetite, sore throat and “feeling sick”. One to two days later, sores in the mouth appear. Lastly, a rash on the palms of the hand and soles of the feet may develop. Hand, foot and mouth disease is caused by a virus (coxsackie A16) and is contagious. It is spread from person to person through saliva (drinking after someone who is sick), fluid from the blisters or the stool of infected children (during diaper changes). Once the child is infected, he or she will come down with the disease in three to seven days. The most common problem seen in children with hand, foot and mouth disease is dehydration from refusing fluids.
HOW WILL I KNOW IF MY CHILD HAS HAND, FOOT, AND MOUTH DISEASE?
The signs and symptoms of hand, foot, and mouth disease are:
• Small ulcers (sores) in the mouth, which may be painful
• Small blisters or red spots on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet
• Low grade fever (100°F/37.8°C).
• Sometimes, small blisters or red spots on the buttocks (bottom)
HOW DO I TREAT HAND, FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE?
No specific treatment is available for this infection, other than providing pain relief from fever and mouth pain and giving your child plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.
• Change to soft foods that are easy to chew for a few days.
• Encourage plenty of clear liquids, cold drinks and popsicles.
• Give acetaminophen (Liquiprin®, Panadol®, Tempra®, Tylenol®) for a fever above 101°F/38.4°C.
• Limit citrus, salty or spicy foods, which may be painful with the mouth sores.
WHEN CAN MY CHILD RETURN TO SCHOOL / CHILD CARE?
Your child can return to school/childcare when the fever is gone and there is no draining from the sores/blisters. The fever and discomfort are usually gone by three or four days. The mouth ulcers usually last for seven days. The rash on the hands and feet can last for 10 days.
Derechos de autor(c) de The Children's Medical Center, ano 1999. Este material unicamente tiene fines educativos. No puede ser reproducido, distribuido ni modificado sin previa autorizacion de The Children's Medical Center of Dayton, One Children's Plaza, Dayton, Ohio, 45404-1815. Llame al 937-641-3666 para solicitar autorizacion o para obtener un juego maestro para copias. Para obtener mas informacion puede visitar www.childrensdayton.org (consulte la seccion de informacion legal).
La informacion contenida en este material es unicamente informacion de tipo general. No debe considerarse como completa. Para obtener mas informacion acerca de los complementos para leche materna, por favor pidala a su doctor.
Corregido: 2000, 2002, 2005
The information contained in this handout is for general information only and should not be considered complete. For specific information about bathing your baby, please ask your doctor or nurse practitioner.
Additional information may be located in the Family Resource Center, 2nd floor, near the Outpatient Surgery Center. Hours of the center vary; please contact the Family Resource Center at 937-641-3700.
Copyright(c) The Children's Medical Center of Dayton. This material is for educational purposes only. It cannot be reproduced or distributed without permission from Dayton Children's.
Revised: 2000, 2002, 2005
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