Hand-foot-mouth disease is a common viral illness that affects infants and children, often appearing as a rash of small, blister-like bumps in the hands, feet and mouth.
- Hand-foot-mouth disease is caused by the coxsackie virus.
- It's very common in children under the age of 10.
- Hand-foot-mouth disease is often confused with foot-and-mouth disease, which affects cattle, sheep and pigs. However, the two diseases are not related.
- The disease is seen most often in the summer and fall.
- Good hand washing helps prevent the spread of the disease.
- Lots of fluids and acetaminophen helps reduce severity of the symptoms.
How Boston Children's Hospital approaches hand-foot-mouth disease
The Children's Hospital Informatics Program created HealthMap, an online resource and smart phone application that helps track the spread of contagious diseases, including Hand-Foot-Mouth disease, in real time.