Can Adults Get Hand-Foot-and-Mouth Disease?


Hand-foot-and-mouth disease is a pretty common viral infection that we see all year round. It tends to affect children under the age of 10, but it most definitely can occur in older children and adults. If you develop a painful rash on the soles of your feet, it might be caused by hand-foot-and-mouth (HFM).

However, a rash on your feet isn’t enough to diagnose HFM. In both children and adults infected with HFM, the foot rash will be accompanied by one or more of these symptoms:

  • a rash on the hands

  • blisters in or around the mouth

  • loss of appetite

  • sore throat

  • fever

  • headache

How you catch it

You can catch HFM disease much like you catch a common cold. It’s spread through contact with an infected surface such as a countertop, utensil, or toy. If you’re in the vicinity of an infected person who’s coughing, you might receive the virus through the air.

The HFM cycle

Adults who are infected with HFM might never show any symptoms at all. If you do, the symptoms will become evident 3-6 days after exposure and last about a week. An infected person, whether symptomatic or not, can still spread the virus. You may also be contagious for a period of weeks even after symptoms disappear.

What do to about a foot rash

Any sort of rash on your feet should be monitored and checked out if it lasts for more than a few days, gets worse, or causes you extreme discomfort. If we’re unable to diagnose hand-foot-and-mouth, we’re going to consider other possible causes. These include fungal infections, athlete’s foot, contact dermatitis, or some other kind of allergy. Count on the expertise of Monmouth County board-certified podiatrists Samantha Boyd, DPM, Hal Ornstein, DPM, Dan Phan, DPM, and Joseph Saka, DPM. We will endeavor to determine the cause of your foot pain or rash in a timely, effective manner. Contact Affiliated Foot & Ankle Center in Howell or Jackson, New Jersey. Call (732) 905-1110 or request an appointment online.