Hand foot and mouth rash – Causes and Treatments

hand foot and mouth rash

Behind this funny name, “Foot Hands Mouth Syndrome” hides an infectious disease common in babies and adults. So, today we will talk about hand, foot mouth rash.

The feet, hands, and mouth syndrome are a viral infectious disease common in children, and especially babies. In the question: viruses of the group A enterovirus family, coxsackie 16, 6 or 10, more rarely enterovirus 71. “These are the most common viruses in infectious disease,” explains Dr. Thomas Hubiche. 

They are present in our environment throughout the year, but a baby’s feet, hands, and mouth syndrome are particularly rife in the summer. After infection, these viruses can survive for up to 6 weeks in the digestive tract. Transmission occurs by fecal-oral mode. That is to say, by direct or indirect contact (objects, food, etc.) with the child’s saliva or stools. Let’s know more about hand foot and mouth rash.


Hand foot and mouth rash

After 4 to 6 days, the disease manifests itself by the eruption of small pimples in three strategic places: the feet’ soles, the hands’ palms, and the mouth. “These are small blisters, which can rupture and then form a little crust. Like chickenpox spots, but smaller. Sometimes the rash affects only one part of the body. In some cases, it also affects the breech, especially in the infant. Pimples can cause discomfort and pain, but not itching,” explains the specialist.  

A febrile episode (a fever that can rise to 39-40 ° C) almost always accompanies the disease. Like a runny nose, sore throat, digestive problems (nausea, vomiting) are also typical. These are all signs that will allow your pediatrician or family doctor to diagnose quickly. Even if in certain diffuse forms, the disease is more difficult to recognize.


Hand foot and mouth rash: treatments

Antibiotics are not automatic! Faced with baby’s feet, hands, and mouth syndrome, they are true of no use because the disease is viral. Your skin will recover spontaneously after a week. In the meantime, it is a question of relieving it with antipyretics against fever. These analgesics are to calm the pain, as well as adequate hydration. He will also continue to attend the nursery or the school because the eviction is not obligatory. On the other hand, elementary hygiene rules – washing your hands thoroughly after each change and meal. These are more than ever applied.


Hand foot and mouth rash: a benign disease

The foot-and-mouth syndrome epidemic, which raged this summer in Vietnam. It leading to the death of 81 children, is cause for concern. Should we be alarmed? No, reassures Dr. Hubiche: “The situation in Southeast Asia is quite different. It is a subtype of enterovirus 71, which is not present in the USA. Phew!

In our regions, the feet, hands, and mouth syndrome is most often benign. And hospitalizations are rare. They mainly relate to discomfort with eating due to the presence of painful pimples in the mouth. An infusion will then be applied to the toddler to feed and rehydrate him.

Complications are mainly due to infection of other organs with the mumps virus.

More rarely, the mumps virus will infect other organs, giving rise to complications:

  • testicles (orchitis), ovaries (oophoritis) or breasts (mastitis) in young adults;
  • the nervous system, the meninges (meningitis), and the brain (encephalitis);
  • the pancreas (pancreatitis).

Mumps orchitis affects about two in ten infected adult patients. It appears four to ten days after parotitis. In the majority of cases (70 to 85%), the inflammation affects only one testicle. There is an increase in fever, a vast, hot, and painful testicle with abdominal pain and, sometimes, vomiting. Symptoms resolve spontaneously within two weeks. Contrary to popular belief, the impact on fertility (subfertility or infertility) is scarce and is only seen in bilateral impairment cases.

Ovaritis and mastitis do not have lasting consequences.

Mumps meningitis is common, but only 10% of cases are symptomatic. It is developing favorably. Its encephalitis is exceptional (0.02% to 0.3% of cases). Rarely fatal. However, it can leave permanent damage. Mumps can cause deafness which is often temporary.

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Acute pancreatitis, which only develops in 5% of cases, appears three to five days after parotitis.

Finally, when mumps occurs during the first trimester of pregnancy, it can cause spontaneous abortions. On the other hand, no cases of fetal malformations were observed.

  • Consult a general practitioner during the day
  • Show him your rash
  • Get medical advice
  • Get a prescription if necessary, based on the diagnosis


Reimbursed by Health Insurance

A “rash” by definition means a generally transient appearance of lesions on the skin, with or without relief, sometimes in the form of blisters. It may be redness, patches, or even whitish or reddish pimples. Qare explains to you what are the most frequent causes and the right reflexes to adopt depending on the case.

Rashes can be linked to several factors:

  • Skin problem
  • More widespread condition of the body
  • the side effects of treatment
  • of disease symptoms mild or more serious

It is perilous to jump to conclusions if you have a rash. The medical team at Qare will give you some possible causes, but remember that only your doctor or a dermatologist can make a reliable diagnosis.

Contact with an irritating substance: contact dermatitis

When you have a hard time tolerating it, it can react with redness or pimples on the affected area. That called “contact dermatitis”.

These sometimes happen with:

  • latex;
  • the jellyfish;
  • Nettles;
  • household products, etc.

In pediatrics, an example of a contact rash is “infant diaper rash”: contact of the baby’s bottom with urine, stool, or wet diapers can cause redness. These usually disappear within a few days with changing diapers more frequently and applying care.

Do not hesitate to consult a specialist to avoid possible complications.

Allergy to a food, an animal, a bite, a drug

It is common for a rash to result from an allergic reaction, such as:

  • Food: nuts, red fruits, kiwis, bananas, pineapples, dairy products, fish, shellfish, eggs;
  • Cosmetic product;
  • Medicine (this can also be a side effect – see the package leaflet);
  • Animal’s bite;
  • Insect bite.

An insect bite, food, or medication can cause an acute allergic reaction. It is also called angioedema or anaphylactic shock. It is a vital emergency depending on the symptoms: you must call 15 without delay.

Good to know: allergies to volatile allergens (pollen, mold, etc.) cause other types of allergic reactions such as asthma, rhinitis, or conjunctivitis.


Infectious causes: chickenpox, measles, rubella

This benign childhood disease is one of the viruses causing skin rashes, just like measles, rubella, or even roseola.


Other viruses can cause skin rashes: herpes and shingles are some of them.

Finally, more severe and rarer bacterial infections can cause skin rashes such as scarlet fever or typhus (for which vaccines exist today).

Other parasites or fungi can create rashes

Among the viral infections with possible skin rash, there is also the infamous AIDS, caused by HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus. This viral infection requires accurate medical monitoring. It is possible to be tested in the laboratory, either by prescription or by paying the fees.

Shingles react to the chickenpox virus, but this awakening is not systematic in people who have already contracted chickenpox. Shingles are known for their nasty rashes. Very exceptionally, shingles can appear without a rash and therefore do not exhibit its characteristic symptoms. More rarely, it can manifest as low back pain, throbbing pain in the lower back.

In any case, the medical team recommends that you consult if you have any doubts about a skin reaction or an infection.

Other possible causes of a rash

Skin rashes can occur with or without fever in children and adults, be contagious or not, and affect, depending on the case, the face, chest, back, arms, legs, or thighs. It can localize Their onset as well as extensive, and progressive or sudden.

Here are some other factors that can explain the rashes:

  1. stress

Stress can trigger or amplify rashes. In this case, the advice we can give you is to manage your stress, try to find the cause, and take actions to be less stressed.

  1. Exposure to the sun
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Skin exposed to the sun and unprotected may experience skin reactions such as sunburn or burns. If you have incredibly fragile skin, you must apply the right sunscreen and protect your skin well, especially clothing.

Doctors suggest that you take the advice of a dermatologist or your general practitioner.

  1. The heat

Heat, especially during sports, can cause red patches, rashes that are temporary and not serious.

If these persist, we recommend that you consult your doctor.

  1. The cold

Just like heat, cold can also cause skin reactions. It may be the outside temperature or the consumption of an ice-cold drink, for example. Usually, these rashes will pass quickly or once you are warm again.

  1. Certain treatments

Some treatments can cause side effects, including rashes. That is particularly the case for heavy treatments such as those against cancer (chemotherapy). In this case, you must follow the advice of your doctors.

Good to know: Be careful not to confuse skin rashes, which are more likely caused by external factors, with retention or inflammatory acne due to excessive sebum production.


When the rashes itch?

When the rashes are itchy and stinging or even tingling, we frequently have hives. The latter usually present in the form of “papules”, similar to the stings of nettles.

How to calm the itching of hives?

Most of the time, hives go away on their own within a few hours. In the case of acute urticaria, the discomfort can last for several days. You can try to soothe the itchy hives by:

  • by applying cold, in compresses for example;
  • with a soothing cream recommended by your pharmacist, knowing that their effectiveness is quite limited;
  • trying to scratch yourself as little as possible;
  • avoiding exposure to what has been identified as the cause of your hives.

If this is appropriate for you, an antihistamine treatment may be prescribed for you by your doctor. The latter will also and above all ensure to identify your hives’ cause to provide an adequate response.


What foods can cause hives?

Do you want to save yourself from hives by taking action on your diet? Not easy to find the right formula insofar as everyone does not react in the same way to food. And you can very well suffer an attack of urticaria following the ingestion of food which until then hadn’t been a trigger.

If you are prone to “chronic hives,” which are hives that recur for several months, you may have spotted some of the seizure-initiating factors, such as histamine, which is present in certain foods. This chemical component can cause small blood vessels on the surface of human skin to dilate suddenly, leading to hives’ attack.


FAQ of Hand foot and mouth rash

  1. Does the Foot-Mouth-Foot itch?

Sometimes the rash affects only one part of the body. In some cases, it also affects the breach, especially in infants.  These little pimples can cause discomfort and pain, but not itching,” explains the specialist.

  1. What is Herpangina?

Herpangina is a common painful infection characterized by ulcers on the back of the mouth in children.  This disease is a common infection that causes small blisters on the hands, feet, inside. And outside of the mouth in any order.

  1. How do you get herpes sore throat?

Man is the reservoir of the herpes simplex virus, responsible for herpetic angina.  Transmission is from a sick person and about a quarter of cases from a healthy carrier of the virus.  This transmission takes place by direct contact (kissing) but also by the respiratory route.

  1. How to treat a foot-and-mouth sore throat?

There is no specific treatment for herpetic angina.  This condition heals spontaneously in a few days without leaving any sequelae.

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