It’s been an interesting afternoon. However, to really set the scene, let us back up a few days.
About ten days ago Buddy was the owner of a rather impressive blister, which then exploded in my face. The next day I developed a few blisters of my own, but only in a small area where I’d been having a bought of eczema on my palm. Awesome. Thanks for sharing.
A few days later you had about 15 of what looked like bug bites. We changed your sheets and gave you a bath.
A few more days later there were more. We started to suspect these might not be bug bites. We have experienced eczema with you (lots and lots) and we’ve experienced hand-foot-and-mouth disease with you (ew). This did not look like any of that.
We decided to wait it out. That is, until we changed your clothes last night and discovered you were covered in little bumps on your back and legs. You still had scattered red bug-bite-ish things all over, but when we added it all up there was way more than could be brushed aside.
To the pediatrician!
Guess what you – WE – have? A brand new strain of our beloved hand-foot-and-mouth disease. Yay.
This new strain does not cluster like the typical strain you had when you were a baby. This strain spreads out and doesn’t necessarily focus on the hands, feet, mouth, and butt like the typical strain. It can be accompanied by a low-grade fever and mild upset stomach (you had neither). It looks like bug bites at first, especially if you don’t catch any of the sores in their ‘blister’ phase. If Buddy didn’t have ridiculously sensitive skin and gotten a full-blown rash, we might not have thought anything was wrong.
The doc said it’s really going around right now, but it’s much harder to spot. When I told Buddy’s school what he had and that it basically looks like a lot of bug bites, three teachers in the room perked up and said, “Oooooh! I bet that’s what this other kid had!” Well, at least you aren’t patient zero.
Treatment – like last time – is…nothing. The virus runs its course. The doc recommended slathering him down in Neosporin to prevent infection of any of the sores. She also recommended oatmeal of baking soda baths to alleviate the itching.
Addendum: Don’t think just because you don’t have symptoms that you escaped unscathed. Adults frequently contract HFM disease but show no symptoms; they are carriers. If your kid has HFM chances are you are walking around spreading it too. Stay away from babies and those with weakened or suppressed immune systems.
Removing Buddy from the general population at this point is futile. You already Typhoid Mary’d your whole class all last week. Good job. I feel bad about that, but who knew? You aren’t contagious anymore but you are still at risk for infection, what with all the healing booboos. So, we shall be making a neosporin-greased pig out of you for the next few days. Won’t that be fun? 🙂
So, spread the word, folks. There’s a new virus in town. Gross photos at the end of this post. Enjoy!
You think we’re done, huh? Nope! Misery loves company doesn’t it?
After finding out that both Buddy and I had HFM disease, we went back to school to share the news and pick up Kitten. She had woken up from nap with a headache and looked a little green. We loaded up in the car and about 5 minutes down the road Kitten announces, “Momma, my tummy hurts. I think I might throw up.”
Cue: screeching of tires and scrambling for that random plastic bag that’s been floating annoyingly around the car for days.
Kitten vomits four times in to the plastic bag, which we then discover has a huge hole in it. She looks awful and my heart breaks for her. At home we discover a fever and she slurps back some meds. We settle all three of us in to a peaceful quarantine in the den and turn on How to Train Your Dragon. Is there anything better when you’re sick than a comfy couch and cartoons??
No. No, there’s not. 🙂
*A small note to the several women that I am hosting overnight on Wednesday: No worries!! I promise! Buddy and I aren’t contagious anymore and Kitten will be right as rain tomorrow morning. I promise to completely sterilize my house before you arrive! Please don’t freak out!