Search This Blog

Monday, February 27, 2012

What is a Hand Foot Mouth Disease (HFMD) ?

A new epidermic disease involving the young children has arrived again at our doorstep in Malaysia.

This trend was detected for the last 02 consecutive years and apparently, it has started to come back again at this moment, incurring a fast increase of young children.

The following extract (see below) was taken from a local media (Sarawak Update) advising all clinics and hospitals to be on the alert ..................
[Hand, foot, and mouth disease (HFMD) is a common illness of infants and children, caused by a virus. It most often occurs in children under 10 years old. It is characterized by fever, sores/ulcers in the mouth, and a rash with blisters. The blisters may appear in the mouth, palms of the hands and soles of the feet. The rashes may also appear on buttocks and on the legs and arms. The ulcers in the mouth usually appear on the tongue, the sides of the cheeks, gums or near the throat.

The most common causes of Hand, Foot and Mouth disease are coxsackie virus A16, enterovirus 71 (EV71) and other enteroviruses. The enterovirus group includes polioviruses, coxsackieviruses, echoviruses and other enteroviruses.

HFMD begins with a mild fever, poor appetite, malaise ("feeling sick"), and frequently a sore throat. One or 2 days after the fever begins, painful sores develop in the mouth. They begin as small red spots that blister and then often become ulcers. They are usually located on the tongue, gums, and inside of the cheeks. The skin rash develops over 1 to 2 days with flat or raised red spots, some with blisters on the palms of the hand and the soles of the feet. A person with HFMD may have only the rash or the mouth ulcers. 

Hand, foot and mouth disease is usually diagnosed based on a complete history and physical examination of your child. It is generally suspected on the appearance of blister-like rash on hands, feet and mouth in children with a mild febrile illness.

Usually, the doctor can distinguish between HFMD and other causes of mouth sores based on the age of the patient, the pattern of symptoms reported by the patient or parent, and the appearance of the rash and sores on examination. A throat and/or blister swab collected preferably within 2 days of onset of HFMD may be sent to a laboratory to determine which enterovirus caused the illness.

Presently, there is no specific effective antivirul drugs and vaccine available for the treatment of HFMD. Symptomatic treatment is given to provide relief from fever, aches, or pain from the mouth ulcers. Dehydration is a concern because the mouth sores may make it difficult and painful for children to eat and drink. Should their affected children be having fever, the parents are advised to dress their children in light, thin clothing, to do tepid sponging with water (room temperature) as often as necessary, and to expose them under the fan. Taking enough liquids is very important apart from body temperature monitoring.

HFMD occurs mainly in children under 10 years old, but may also occur in adults too. Everyone is at risk of infection, but not everyone who is infected becomes ill. Infants, children, and adolescents are more likely to be susceptible to infection and illness from these viruses, because they are less likely than adults to have antibodies and be immune from previous exposures to them. Infection results in immunity to the specific virus, but a second episode may occur following infection with a different virus belonging to the enterovirus group.

Parents must make sure their children practice a good health care. Wash hand before having food, have shower after play outside and bring your children seek for doctor when they are ill. Be alert at all time in any circumstances and most important make sure our residential are clean].

No comments: