What's Going Around - November 11, 2008

By: Stacia Naquin Email
By: Stacia Naquin Email

There are three illnesses going around the area this week:

The first: hand, foot and mouth disease. It can happen all year long, but it becomes more common in the fall. On the East Side of Colorado Springs, Dr. Doug Clark with Mountain View Medical Group has seen a couple of cases. Hand, foot and mouth is a viral illness that causes blisters on the hands, feet and in the mouth. You may also have a fever, decreased appetite and sore throat. It usually lasts 3-5 days and is easily spread through children. There is no specific treatment… just good hygiene to keep the infection from spreading.

The second illness going around this week: strep throat. In the Fountain and Security areas, Nurse Practitioner Virginia Quiroz is seeing a lot of cases. She says it’s happening in folks of all ages, but especially in kids. You’ll notice pain in the throat, especially when swallowing. Strep is also characterized by fever and white spots in the back of the throat. Antibiotics are usually needed. But strep can resolve on its own. Just be aware that scarlet fever, rheumatic fever and serious kidney problems can develop. So, it’s best to be seen by your doctor.

The third illness going around is viral gastroenteritis. It’s already shown up a couple of times this year in doctor’s offices across the area. This time Dr. Bradford Tewes with Colorado Springs Health Partners Department of Family Medicine is seeing it on the East Side of the Springs. It typically presents with the sudden onset of nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. It can also include abdominal cramping, bloating and low-grade fever and chills. It usually goes away in about a week. But can treat the symptoms. The best advice is to drink plenty of fluids and use anti-diarrhea medicine as needed.

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