Ministry forecasts increase of hand-foot-mouth disease

Updated: 2008-05-03 14:53

BEIJING -- China's Ministry of Health forecast Saturday that cases of hand-foot-mouth disease (HFMD) would possibly increase in the following months since June and July are the peak seasons for the disease.

This year, more incidents of HFMD, caused by Enterovirus 71, or EV71, were reported in Singapore and China's Taiwan region compared with the same period last year. In China's mainland, more cases were also reported in Anhui and other provinces, according to the ministry.

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The ministry has issued the latest guide on HFMD prevention and control. The guide, posted on the ministry's website, lists detailed information on HFMD origin, symptoms, prevention and control.

The ministry said more training on HFMD diagnosis and treatment would be given to pediatricians.

A suspected death case of hand-foot-mouth disease was reported early Saturday morning in South China's Guangdong Province.

On Friday, local health authorities of central Hubei Province announced 340 HFMD cases were discovered, but no deaths were reported.

In Anhui with the most serious incidence, death toll rose to 22 after another child died in eastern Fuyang City, local authorities said Friday afternoon.

The Health Ministry also issued a circular on Friday to strengthen the management and surveillance of the disease.

The ministry urged hospitals to report the disease within 24 hours, and asked local health departments to report emergency information timely to the public and increase investment in research on the disease.

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

It may also cause high fever, meningitis, encephalitis, pulmonary edema and paralysis in some children.

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