Guangdong reports death from hand-foot-mouth disease

Updated: 2008-05-03 13:32

GUANGZHOU -- A suspected death case of hand-foot-mouth disease was reported in south China's Guangdong Province, the provincial health department announced early Saturday morning.

The case was reported in Gaoming district of Foshan city on Friday, and the victim was an 18-month-old boy who died at 10 a.m. Friday after he got ill on April 27, the Guangdong Provincial Health Department said in a statement.

The case was probably caused by the intestinal virus known as enterovirus 71, or EV71, according to the instant sample examination from the provincial disease prevention control center.

Further examination is under way.

Another suspected death case of the disease by preliminary clinic diagnosis was reported in Gaoming district on April 25, according to the health department. The department sent experts to Gaoming on Friday morning to guide the disease control work.

The health bureau of Foshan city has carried out a daily report system of the disease since Thursday.

Death toll from a mass intestinal virus infection rose to 22 in Fuyang city in the eastern Anhui Province since early March.

EV71 can cause hand, foot and mouth disease, which usually starts with a slight fever followed by blisters and ulcers in the mouth and rashes on hands and feet.

Central China's Hubei Province has seen 340 cases of hand-foot-mouth disease this year, but no deaths have been reported, local health authorities said Friday.

Hand-foot-mouth disease, also known as coxsackievirus infection, is a common childhood illness that mainly affects children under ten. Symptoms include fever, sores in the mouth and a rash with blisters. It often begins with a sore throat.

Moderately contagious, the disease, more common in summer and autumn, can be transmitted through nose and throat discharges.

Infection can lead to high death rates in serious cases and no vaccines are available.

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