Is it Chicken Pox or Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 06-22-2013, 07:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Help! I'm going nuts, I've been reading so much online and still can't seem to decide what my 21 month old son has. Photos seem so similar for both also. (Docs are closed today and I've read many accounts of docs not necessarily being able to tell difference either). Anyone else had any of these conflicting symptoms in their kids?


Quick background: Pretty sure he caught it from his cousin (who, incidentally, got CP 10 days after getting vaxed for it -no comment on the irony there) but was supposedly past contagious time, as his spots had scabbed over. 2-3 days later,  DS had low grade fever, was really nurse-y/ cuddly. Few days after that got spots. Over the past day or 2 he has a total of maybe 50? Most are quite small.   Mainly in diaper area, legs/feet, and hands/arms.   He's taking it really well, just a bit clingier than usual.


reasons to think CP:

1) cousin was diagnosed with it. (maybe doc got it wrong??)

2) NO sores in mouth (is it because he's still nursing lots?)

3) only a couple of sores on inside of hands (read that spotty palms are a sure sign of HFMD)

4) the big spots seem to have some fluid in them and are beginning to get "crusty".

5) lots in groin area (read somewhere that in boys especially this is common, as it's where many nerve ending are.)

6) he's had a real chesty cough and runny nose (read that chest infection often accompanies CP.)


reasons to think HFMD:

1) many red spots on soles of feet and toes (looks kind of like he attacked by mosquitos) That's also the only area that seems to be itchy sometimes.

2) NO spots on torso.

3) only one spot on face, near lip.

4) incubation time was day 6 for spots.


I'm probably forgetting to add something, but would really, really love to hear if anyone else has gone through this or had similar symptoms in their kids? I had no idea how similar the 2 viruses were in terms of symptoms. thx in advance.

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#2 of 4 Old 06-22-2013, 07:51 PM - Thread Starter
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#3 of 4 Old 06-22-2013, 10:27 PM
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Sounds hard to say. DS had HFM when he was about 13 months old, and he had spots all over his fingers and hands, toes and feet. A few in the groin, too, and some around his mouth and nose. What your son has sounds similar. It's been so long since I've had or seen CP that I can't remember well enough to compare. Hope the little guy isn't too uncomfortable!
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#4 of 4 Old 06-23-2013, 08:21 AM
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My guys have had both. My kiddos were much more irritable with CP than HFM. And they were covered in spots with CP. with HFM it really was hands, feet and mouth only- and the spots came on fast.
My normally easy going kid absolutely refused to eat but to me it sounded like he was telling me his throat hurt. So since his little bro got strep all the time I ran him in for a test. It was neg and I was a bit stymied. We got to the car and he had blisters all over his hands; they had developed in less than 15 minutes.

And really the only reason to know exactly is so that you can say he's had them, the treatment is pretty much the same. Treat the symptoms, keep them comfortable, keep them hydrated.
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