Mother wants to raise awareness after son contracts hand, foot and mouth disease at local park

Abigail Rodriguez says her 5-year-old caught the disease after playing at Pearsall Park during a field trip.

SAN ANTONIO — Hand, foot and mouth disease can be painful and uncomfortable for children.

“Hand, foot and mouth disease is a fairly common occurrence in young children and causes painful blister like lesions of the face and mouth and throat,” said Dr. Fred Campbell, associate professor of medicine at UT Health San Antonio.

Dr. Campbell says the disease can lead to dehydration. The child might refuse to drink or eat because their mouth or throat hurts. He also says children can get the disease through contact.

“Through either secretions from the mouth or from the feces,” says Dr. Campbell.

Last week, Abigail Rodriguez posted on Facebook that her 5-year-old son caught the disease after playing at a local park during a school field trip.

Abigail didn’t want to talk on camera, but says she would like to raise awareness about the disease. She says her son experienced a high fever and was in a lot of pain.

“Hand, foot and mouth disease is very likely to occur in situations where a lot of young children congregate, such as playgrounds and similar areas,” said Dr. Campbell.

Dr. Campbell says you can treat the disease with over the counter medicine.

“For children who can take those medications, a combination of acetaminophen and ibuprofen would be perfectly reasonable to use,” he said.

Dr. Campbell says while it’s very difficult to prevent the disease, you can protect yourself and your children by simply washing your hands.

“Particularly of children and of workers who care for children, several times a day would be the most effective way of preventing transmission. The virus would be killed by simple hand washing,” said Dr. Campbell.

For more information about HFMD you can click here.

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