the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, Fox news reports The Pequannock Panthers started their season a week later than expected after a nasty outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) commonly known as coxsackie virus that has been spreading across northern New Jersey.
The Coxsackie virus or HFMD, caused by coxsackie viruses, usually causes fever, malaise, rash, and small blisters that ulcerate. The most frequent locations for the blisters/ulcers are on the palms of the hand, soles of the feet, and in the mouth. Coxsackie virus was first isolated from human feces in the town of Coxsackie, N.Y., in 1948 by G. Dalldorf.
Prevention is difficult; avoid direct contact with anyone with HFMD, and their stool, saliva, and blister fluid. Hand washing and cleaning of items handled by HFMD patients are the best additional methods for prevention.
The virus prompted the cancelation of games and after-school events at a number of high schools including Pequannock, High Point West Milford and Kinnelon, which just reported 8 cases.
Possible cases of the virus have been reported at a half-dozen high schools in New Jersey. But the state’s Health Department says that is not worth panicking over because outbreaks this time of year are common. In fact last year, there were six and the year before that 23.
HFMD usually occurs in children but can occur in adults. HFMD usually resolves in about 10 days with no scarring, but the person may shed coxsackie virus for several weeks. Lab tests for coxsackie viruses can be done, the vast majority of infections are diagnosed by clinical features (HFMD blisters/ulcers), but this may change with the onset of new outbreaks and causes of severe HFMD. There is no specific treatment or vaccine available for coxsackie virus infections.