What are the signs and symptoms of the disease?
Hand-foot-and-mouth disease produces a characteristic rash inside
the mouth and on the hands and feet. In younger children, the rash may also
occur on the thighs, buttocks, and trunk. The lesions inside the mouth are
usually mildly painful yellow ulcers with a red halo. The lesions on the skin
usually start as red areas that may or may not be itchy. The lesions may change
to gray blisters with thick walls.
Before the rash develops, the person may have other symptoms,
fever that ranges from about 100 to 102 degrees F
irritability in younger children
loss of appetite
malaise, or a vague
feeling of illness
HFM disease is usually a minor illness with only a few days of
fever and relatively mild symptoms. Rarely, a severe form of HFM disease caused
by enterovirus 71 can involve the brain. Viral meningitis,
encephalitis, or paralysis can result.