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India: HFMD- note new strain in Mumbai

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  • India: HFMD- note new strain in Mumbai


    New virus strain hits kids
    TNN 13 September 2009, 05:06am IST

    KOLKATA: A combination of virus strains has left children in Kolkata and its suburbs with rashes all over their face, hands and abdomen. The
    hand, foot and mouth disease, as it is being called, targets children below the age of six. Though not fatal, the disease can cause complications in some cases.

    For most children, the disease manifests itself with fever and pain, which lasts around seven days. "One can't really pinpoint from where the virus strain has come here. This year, it has been an outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease. Cases have spread from schools," said pediatrician Amlan Mukherjee.

    Doctors are advising parents not to send children to schools, as the possibility of contact is very high. The disease is extremely contagious and spreads through sneezing and coughing. That is what makes children highly susceptible. Among adults, cases of hand, foot and mouth disease are extremely rare.

    In children, it takes about a week for the symptoms to appear after being affected. It starts with pink lesions on various parts of the body. Blisters also appear in the mouth, hands and feet. In most cases, the rashes spread to arms and also buttocks.

    Mohit Dutta, a resident of Tollygunge, recounted the symptoms in his son, who had recently suffered from the disease. "First the rashes appeared on both knees. He would itch terribly. The lesions soon spread to the palms. The blisters in the knuckles soon grew large," Dutta said.

    Pediatrician Shantanu Roy said both his sons were bedridden with the disease. "It is extremely contagious and utmost care has to be taken to ensure that the child is kept secluded," Roy said.

    Strains of Coxsackie A virus are mainly responsible for the disease. And though it is rarely lethal, it could take a serious turn if caused by Enterovirus. There is no specific treatment. Ointments are prescribed to treat blisters. If the strain is a severe one, the child can develop encephalitis, meningitis or pulmonary haemorrhage.

    In recent years, outbreaks of hand, foot and mouth disease have been reported mostly from South-East Asian countries like Malaysia, Taiwan, parts of China and southern and western India.

  • #2
    Re: India: HFMD


    New mild virus targets kids under 5 years of age
    TNN 18 September 2009, 03:11am IST
    MUMBAI: A benign but irritating viral infection is sweeping through the city, targeting children under five years of age. Called the hand, foot
    and mouth disease (HFMD), it has been on the increase in the past couple of weeks, say paediatricians.

    What makes the condition irritating is the appearance of a rash over the body and in the mouth. Otherwise, it is a mild condition with moderate fever.

    "The hand, foot and mouth disease is caused by the enterovirus group which includes the coxsackie virus,'' said Dr Indu Khosla, who consults at Hinduja hospital. "We have been seeing HFMD on and off over the last year and it has been on the increase in the past few days,'' she said.

    Dr Sandeep Kelkar, who is attached to Jupiter Hospital in Thane and is the vice-president of the local Indian Academy of Paediatrics, has been seeing between five to 10 children every day. "It is not a worrisome condition though children may become irritable because of a rash in their throats. They are unable to eat,'' he said.

    The disease was first noticed last year when members of IAP's Thane and Mumbai branches discussed it at their monthly meetings. While tests to detect the virus are rarely done as they take long and are expensive, IAP members studied the symptoms and decided it was most probably HFMD caused by the coxsackie virus.

    The main concern with HFMD is that at times, it is also accompanied with pharyngitis and a rash on the back that seems similar to chicken pox. At other times, it also gets misdiagnosed as sore throat, resulting in unnecessary antibiotics being administered to children, said a senior doctor. Dr Khosla, however, said that the condition is so mild that children could even be sent to school. "It is only mildly contagious and not severely debilitating. Within five days, the child's symptoms disappear completely,'' she added.


    • #3
      Re: India: HFMD


      BMC is unaware of hand, foot and mouth disease
      Deepa Suryanarayan / DNA
      Friday, September 18, 2009 2:20 IST

      Mumbai: Six-year-old Yash Garg has been suffering from a rash on his hands and feet for the past four days. And so is every kid that goes to his cr?che in Bandra.

      "When I called them up to inform them that Yash would not come for the next few days, imagine my surprise when they said that they had shut down the cr?che for a while.

      Apparently, several children have complained of the same infection," said Avantika Garg, Yash's mother and a corporate lawyer. Yash has a skin rash on his knees, palm and soles, and simply refuses to eat, she added.

      According to paediatricians in several parts of the city, including Bandra, King's Circle and Ghatkopar, symptoms of hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD), similar to those of a contagious viral disease affecting infants and children, have been seen in several of their young patients.

      "HFMD is not harmful but is extremely inconvenient. I have seen several cases -- at least 30 since September," said Dr Shailesh Shah, Bandra-based paediatrician.

      However, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is unaware of the outbreak, which has been present in the suburbs for over ten days now. "We have not received any information about HFMD so far," said civic official from the ward. Civic executive health officer Dr Jayaraj Thanekar also admitted to not having received any report from any part of the city.


      • #4
        Re: India: HFMD- note new strain in Mumbai


        Viral attack on Thane kids has Finnish twist
        Malathy Iyer , TNN 8 October 2009, 02:50am IST
        MUMBAI: City scientists have found that a new strain of virus is causing the outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) among city children
        under five years of age. This strain was previously noticed only in Finland in the fall of 2008, causing an outbreak of HFMD along with nail-shedding among children. HFMD, a benign but irritating viral infection, is characterised by painful rashes across feet, hands, mouth and buttocks. It is also accompanied by throat infection and fever.

        The scientists belonging to the Enterovirus Research Centre (EVRC) - an Indian Council for Medical Research laboratory located in Parel - made the discovery when they took samples from various children reportedly suffering from HFMD in Thane.

        "Virologists from EVRC read the September 18 report in The Times of India about Thane pediatricians talking about an HFMD outbreak. They have since been collecting samples of throat swabs, blood and fluid from the vesicles,'' said Dr Sandeep Kelkar, a pediatrician at Jupiter Hospital who is one of the four pediatricians who was contacted by EVRC for the study. The other pediatricians include Dr Sudhir Sane, Dr Suhas Kulkarni and Dr Parmanand Andharkar.

        A thorough diagnosis in the high-tech EVRC lab, which is dedicated to studying enteroviruses such as the polio-causing viruses, revealed a surprise-a new epidemic-causing strain. "We had all along thought that the HFMD didn't exist in India. But when Malaysia, Singapore and their neighbouring countries reported an HFMD outbreak caused by the enterovirus 71 (EV 71) strain in 2008, we began actively looking for instances at home,'' said EVRC director Dr Jagdish Deshpande.

        Medical textbooks state that HFMD is mainly caused by coxsackie A16 - which is a benign version - and EV 71, which could lead to neurological damage (meningitis, polio-like symptoms) or fatality. Malaysia reported deaths in the 2008 outbreak of EV71.

        It is in this background that the EVRC team rushed to Thane to collect samples. But EVRC's Dr Vinay Saxena, who is conducted the research and will soon present a research paper, found a different strain causing the epidemic.

        "We found coxsackiecirus A6 causing the Thane outbreak,'' said Dr Deshpande, adding that the scientific community is relieved that there is no presence of EV71.


        • #5
          Re: India: HFMD- note new strain in Mumbai


          City sees rise in hand, foot and mouth disease in kids
          Submitted by Deepan Chawla on Tue, 10/20/2009 - 08:10.

          One-year-old Vedant never used to sit in one place. But for the past week, the naughty toddler had been unusually cranky and does not zip around his Thane residence because of painful rashes that have developed all over his body.

          Vedant is among the many children from Mumbai and Thane who are suffering from the hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD). Cases of the viral infection, which usually affects children under five years of age, had first cropped up in the city last winter.

          Lalbaug-based paediatrician Dr Tanmay Amladi said he had been seeing over 20 children every day for the past week. Dr Samir Dalwai, whose clinic is in Goregaon, has seen over 30 children in the last two weeks.

          Doctors said many children are brought late due to lack of awareness. ?The condition is often wrongly labelled as an allergy or chicken pox because of the rash,? said Dr Sandeep Kelkar from Jupiter Hospital.

          Vedant?s parents had also thought he had an allergy and had taken him to two skin specialists before he was diagnosed with HFMD. ?We had not even heard of this disease. But now some otherchildren in our friend circle have also got it,? said his father, Vishal Mane.

          Cases of HFMD are being reported in Thane since August. HFMD is most commonly caused by ?coxsackievirus A16? but the outbreak in Thane has been due to different starin, ?coxsackievirus A6?.

          Scientists from Parel?s Enter-ovirus Research Centre had studied the throat swabs, blood and stool samples of about 160 HFMD-infectedchildren from Thane to see whether the disease was caused by the entero-virus 71, which had killed many children in Malaysia in 2008.

          Dr Kelkar said they are now observing the children to ascertain the ?infectivity? of the disease. ?Usually, children recover within five to 10 days. But we are trying to figure out for how long children remain infected so they can take adequate precautions and avoid spreading the disease,? he said.


          • #6
            Re: India: HFMD- note new strain in Mumbai

            EV71 is not exactly a new virus - it has been infecting (and killing) kids for the past couple years in Mainland China, Taiwan, and elsewhere in Asia.

            It may be new in Mumbai.