The Provincial Health Office reminded the public to observe minimum public health protocols as the Province of Iloilo logged 224 suspected cases of hand, foot, and mouth disease (HFMD) in 24 towns from January 1 to 22, 2023.
Pavia topped the list with 29 cases but Provincial Health Officer Dr Maria Socorro Quiñon said they expect the numbers to increase with the detection of additional patients. Barotac Nuevo recorded 23 cases; San Dionisio, 21; Bingawan, 20; Calinog, 16; Barotac Nuevo, 15; Lemery, 13; Leon, 12; Pototan, 10; and Santa Barbara, Banate, and Lambunao got 9 cases each.
Quiñon said the majority of the patients are children aged 1 to 10 years old.
HFMD is a viral disease caused by Coxsackievirus A16 and Enteroviruses.
The health officer said it could be prevented through adherence to minimum health protocols such as frequent handwashing, wearing of face masks, and observance of social distancing.
Proper waste disposal should also be observed.
Quiñon advised the patients to avoid attending school until the lesions or blisters have healed and their fever has gone down.
HFMD is generally mild and it does not require admission unless the patient got dehydrated. Paracetamol could also be taken to treat the fever.
“If the symptoms are already beyond 10 days, then that is the time that you need to bring the patient to the doctor,” Quiñon said.
The provincial health officer also warned that pregnant women who have contracted HFMD are at risk of abortion or miscarriage.
She advised them of prenatal care and surveillance to avoid birth complications.
(LHC / Capitol news)