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Infectious Disease Online

Pathology of Coxsackievirus

Infection (Hand, foot and

mouth disease)    

Dr Sampurna Roy MD     






Coxsackieviruses belongs to a group of viruses called enteroviruses.

Enteroviruses includes polioviruses, coxsackievirus and echoviruses.

Visit:   Picornavirus Infection ; Poliomyelitis  ; Echovirus Infection.

Coxsackieviruses were first isolated in suckling mice from the faeces of two children suffering from a poliomyelitis-like syndrome in the town of Coxsackie, New York.

When additional agents of the same group were isolated, it was recognized that some, called group A, produced generalized myositis and flaccid paralysis in the mice used for isolation.

Others, classified as group B, produced a focal myositis but also affected the myocardium, brown fat, pancreas, and central nervous system.

Damage to the central nervous system results in spastic paralysis.

Coxsackieviruses, like most members of the enterovirus group are transmitted predominantly by the fecal-oral route rather than by respiratory secretions.

They have been associated with the following diseases of children : aseptic meningitis, encephalitis, herpangina, pleurodynia, hand-foot-mouth disease, pericarditis, lymphonodular pharyngitis, epidemic conjunctivitis, and myocarditis.

Hand, foot, and mouth disease:

Hand, foot, and mouth disease is usually characterized by tiny blisters on the inside of the mouth and the palms of the hands, fingers, and soles of the feet.

It is a common illness of infants and children.

This infectious disease is commonly caused by coxsackievirus A16 (an enterovirus).

The disease begins with a mild fever, poor appetite, malaise and frequently a sore throat. One or 2 days after the fever begins, painful sores develop in the mouth.

They begin as small red spots that blister and then often become ulcers. 

Nearly all patients recover without medical treatment in 7 to 10 days. 

Rarely, the patient with coxsackievirus A16 infection may also develop "aseptic" or viral meningitis.

Another cause of Hand, foot, and mouth disease, Enterovirus 71( EV71) may also cause viral meningitis and, rarely, more serious diseases, such as encephalitis, or a poliomyelitis-like paralysis. EV71 encephalitis may be fatal.


Further reading:

Coxsackievirus myocarditis: interplay between virus and host in the pathogenesis of heart disease.

Coxsackie B viruses and the kidney--a neglected topic.

Deaths in children during an outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease in Peninsular Malaysia--clinical and pathological characteristics

The group B coxsackieviruses and myocarditis.

Deaths of children during an outbreak of hand, foot, and mouth disease in sarawak, malaysia: clinical and pathological characteristics of the disease. For the Outbreak Study Group.





Dr Sampurna Roy  MD

Consultant  Histopathologist (Kolkata - India)  ;  Dermpath-India  ;   Soft Tissue Tumour Online ; Cardiac Path Online ;

Infectious Disease Online ;  Paraganglioma-Online Mesothelioma-Online ; Pathology Quiz Online ;

GI Path Online ; Pulmonary Pathology Online  ; Lung Tumour Online ; Endocrine Pathology Online ;

Ear Pathology Online ;   Eye Pathology Online ; Paediatric Pathology Online ;

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