You should stay home while you are sick with hand, foot, and mouth disease
- Usually self-limiting but unpleasant
- It is unrelated to animal foot and mouth disease.
- Coxsackievirus A16 is the most common cause
- Enterovirus 71 associated with severe disease, such as encephalitis
- Other enteroviruses
- Outbreaks occur frequently among groups of children
- Malaise, fever, systemically unwell
- Usually Infants and young children but can affect adults
- Painful mouth vesicles and ulcers and spots on the hands and feet.
- Fingernail and toenail loss have been reported
- Dehydration due to oral pain interfering with the intake of fluids
- Secondary bacterial infection of lesions can occur.
- Encephalitis, aseptic meningitis, and acute flaccid paralysis.
- Reassure the person, parent, or guardian, and explain that hand, foot, and mouth disease is usually a mild, self-limiting illness.
- Encourage hydration and antipyretics. A soft diet may be necessary if mouth ulcers are painful. Young children are particularly prone to dehydration. Give paracetamol or ibuprofen for symptomatic relief for painful oral lesions.
- Avoid antibiotics either orally or topically (unless a secondary infection is suspected). Do not prescribe antiviral medication. Follow up is not routinely required, but advise the person to seek medical advice if they become dehydrated or more unwell.