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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

Brenner Children’s pediatric emergency department has moved back to its original location. Learn more

In order to help protect patients, family members and health care workers from the spread of COVID-19, no visitors are allowed at any of Wake Forest Baptist Health’s outpatient or inpatient facilities, except in certain situations.
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A to Z: Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease

A to Z: Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease

What's in this Article?

A to Z: Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease

May also be called: HFM, HFMD

Hand, foot, and mouth disease is a common contagious illness caused by viruses from the enterovirus family, most commonly the coxsackievirus.

More to Know

Hand, foot, and mouth disease (HFM) causes painful blisters in the mouth and throat, and on the hands, feet, and diaper area. Often, there is a fever that lasts about 3 days. All symptoms usually go away in less than a week. Because HFM is a viral infection, antibiotics are not used to treat it.

The infection most commonly affects children under age 5 and easily spreads to others through mucus, saliva, fluid from the blisters, or stool (poop).

Keep in Mind

Hand, foot, and mouth disease is usually mild and will go away on its own in a few days.

All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.