Hand Foot And Mouth Disease

Hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) is a human syndrome caused by intestinal viruses of the Picornaviridae family. The most common strains causing HFMD are Coxsackie A virus and Enterovirus 71 (EV-71).

HFMD usually affects infants and children, and is quite common. It is moderately contagious and is spread through direct contact with the mucus, saliva, or feces of an infected person. It typically occurs in small epidemics in nursery schools or kindergartens, usually during the summer and autumn months. The usual incubation period is 3–7 days.

It is uncommon in adults, but those with immune deficiencies are very susceptible. HFMD is not to be confused with foot-and-mouth disease (also called hoof-and-mouth disease), which is a disease affecting sheep, cattle, and swine, and which is unrelated to HFMD (but also caused by a member of the Picornaviridae family).

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