Algoma Public Health
Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease
What is it?
- An infection caused by the virus called coxsackie.
- Virus is found in nose and throat discharges and stool of an infected person.
What are the symptoms?
- Sore Throat
- Loss of appetitie
- Lack of energy
- Small, painful blister-like sores found in mouth, on fingers, palms of hands and soles of feet
- Occasionally found on buttocks
- May last 7-10 days
How quickly do symptoms develop?
- Within 3-5 days after coming in contact with an infected person.
How is it spread?
- By direct contact with nose and throat discharges fluid from blisters and stool of infected people.
- By indirect contact with contaminated toys, objects or surfaces
- From coughs and sneezes of an infected person
How long is it contagious?
- During the acute stage of illness and perhaps longer, since the virus stays in the stool for several weeks.
- Child may return to school/daycare when the fever is gone and feeling well enough to participate. Those with open mouth sores or oozing blisters should not attend.
How is it treated?
- No specific treatment.
What can you do?
- Wash hands – especially after using toilet, changing diapers and before eating.
- Discard soiled tissues and diapers promptly.
- Do not share facecloths, towels, eating utensils or drinking glasses.
- Control sharing of toys and/or use washable or disposable toys
Date of Creation: June 1, 2015
Last Modified: Feb 25, 2015