What's Going Around

By: Lauren Evans Email
By: Lauren Evans Email

In Okemos, Dr. Dennis Perry at Meridian Primary Care, a partner of McLaren Greater Lansing, is treating two illnesses that are related: coxsackievirus and hand-foot-and-mouth disease.

Dr. Perry says kids and young adults typically get coxsackievirus.

Symptoms include: high fever, severe sore throat, blisters, swollen glands, body aches, and headache. It's not uncommon for kids to just have a very high fever and nothing else.

Coxsackievirus is very contagious.

To treat it, rest, drink fluids and take over-the-counter pain relievers or fever reducers.

Most cases clear up in a week or so.

Coxsackievirus can lead to hand-foot-and-mouth disease, which Dr. Perry is also seeing kids coming down with.

It usually begins with a lower fever, poor appetite, and a sore throat. A day or two after fever, painful sores develop in the mouth. A non-itchy skin rash appears over a day or two, usually on the pals of the hands, the soles of feet, or the buttocks.

Hand-foot-and-mouth can usually be treated at home. It clears up in seven to 10 days.

Your child should drink lots of cool fluids, avoid spicy or acidic foods, and take acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Do not give your child aspirin.

Call the doctor if your child has a fever above 103 degrees.

Hand-foot-and-mouth disease is very contagious. Don't let your child share toys or give kisses while he or she has it. Wash hands often and thoroughly.

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