Experts have warned families about hand, foot and mouth disease, the incidence of which in children has increased in Turkey in recent months. Experts noted that the number of cases has increased compared to previous years and pointed out that the disease can be more contagious in communal areas during the summer holidays. Noting that hand, foot and mouth disease, a common viral disease that usually affects children under the age of 10, has a rapid onset, experts said that by paying attention to hygiene rules, the infestation can be reduced.
“Hand, foot and mouth disease is being confused with measles or chickenpox”
Claiming that hand, foot and mouth disease is often confused with diseases such as measles, mumps or chicken pox, Private Kastamonu Anadolu Hospital Infectious Diseases and Clinical Microbiology Specialist Uzm. Dr. Osman Kocabıyık said: “The most common rashes in societies where childhood vaccines such as measles, rubella, mumps and chicken pox are made are the most common rashes, and they may be confused with these diseases among the people due to the rash. Although it occurs in all age groups, hand, foot and mouth disease, which mainly affects children, can cause epidemics, especially in the summer months, although it can occur in all seasons. For this reason, this season is a period when the incidence of diseases increases, and this year the number has increased slightly more. The recent increase in measles cases in our country allows families to compare both diseases, but both diseases can be easily distinguished by health professionals due to the difference in the form of rashes and the sites of involvement.
“It is possible to become infected by swallowing pool water, touching toys, towels and sunbeds.”
Noting that it is possible to become infected by swallowing pool water, touching places such as toys, towels and lounge chairs, Uzm. Dr. Kocabıyık said: “Hand, foot and mouth disease is caused by viruses from the enterovirus family, which includes polioviruses, coxsackieviruses, echoviruses and other enteroviruses. These viruses can be found in the nasal and throat secretions, fluid in the skin blisters, and stool of an infected person. Becoming infected with the viruses that cause this disease through close contact, such as hugging an infected person, through droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes, swallowing swimming pool water, touching contaminated objects and surfaces such as toys, towels and sun loungers, and then touching the eyes, mouth or nose without washing hands possible. “Usually a person with hand, foot, and mouth disease is most contagious in the first week of the disease,” he said.
“It is necessary not to touch the rash on the skin and keep it clean”
Kocabıyık stated that the rash on the skin should not be touched and kept clean, saying: “It is a clinical picture characterized by flu-like fever, sore throat, anorexia and fatigue symptoms, as well as rashes in the mouth and around the skin. mouth, on the palms and soles of the feet. These sores usually start as small red spots in the mouth, on the palate, on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet, and can blister and become painful. Difficulty swallowing may occur. When the blister, which is a little itchy and painful, is opened, the fluid inside can spread the virus. For this reason, it is necessary not to touch the rash on the skin and to keep it clean. These open wounds, which look like sores on the skin, heal within a few weeks with proper care. This disease is usually a self-limiting viral disease that does not cause serious illness. The patients recover fully with resolution of all developing findings within 7 to 10 days. The most common complication of hand, foot, and mouth disease is fluid loss. The disease can cause ulcers in the mouth and throat, making swallowing painful. It is important to be treated and observed. Sometimes the enterovirus that causes foot and mouth disease causes serious complications. These complications can cause viral or aseptic meningitis.
“There is no proven vaccine or special drug to prevent hand, foot and mouth disease”
Kocabıyık stated that there is no vaccine with proven efficacy and safety in the prevention of hand, foot and mouth disease, or a special drug for its treatment, Kocabıyık said: “The diagnosis is usually made clinically, and the relevant doctors establish the differential diagnosis of other diseases with rashes by physical examination. In some suspicious and atypical cases, the health care provider may take samples from the patient’s throat or stool and send them to the lab to test for the virus. There is no vaccine with proven efficacy and safety in the prevention of hand, foot and mouth disease, and there is no specific drug for its treatment. Painkillers, antipyretics, mouthwash, antipruritic creams are used to relieve the symptoms of the disease. Hand, foot and mouth disease cannot be cured with herbal treatment. Such supplements should not be used without consulting the doctor. Those who have hand, foot, and mouth disease should definitely regain the lost fluid. For this reason, the sick child should be encouraged to drink fluids, and if necessary intravenous fluid support should be given to children who cannot receive adequate fluid and nutritional support.
“The sick person must stay at home for at least a week to prevent spreading”
Noting that the sick should stay at home for at least a week to avoid spreading during the symptomatic period, Private Kastamonu Anadolu Hospital Specialist. Dr. Osman Kocabıyık said: “It is recommended that the sick person, if possible, stays at home for at least a week and does not come into contact with susceptible people to avoid spreading during the symptomatic period. To prevent transmission, sensitive people should wash their hands regularly with soap and water, properly disinfect frequently touched surfaces, properly disinfect objects and toys that have been contaminated through contact, and avoid using common cutlery and close contact.