Oregon Trail School District says it is only aware of a few cases of HMFD, not an outbreak

Contrary to reports on social media, Sandy High School is not suffering an wide-spread outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease.

The Post has consulted the Oregon Trail School District, and to date only a few members of the football team are said to have contracted the illness.

"Unfortunately, it's not uncommon around kids in locker rooms," explained district communications manager Julia Monteith. "(But) there's no outbreak. There's not anything out of the ordinary."

Monteith added that she has heard of reports of cases of HMFD in the Sandy community, but not with any great emphasis on the high school.

"(The school nurse) has heard it's out in the community," Monteith said. "We have a pretty strict exclusion policy here though. If we see kids with symptoms, we send them home. (And) our custodians do a really good job of cleaning door knobs and desks just on a normal day, which helps prevent outbreaks."

Monteith urged parents and guardians of students to keep children home if they believe their children are exhibiting symptoms.

"It is very contagious," she added. She also advised that the best way to prevent many communicable diseases is to make sure to wash one's hands frequently.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, HMFD is a common viral illness that usually affects infants and children younger than 5. However, it can sometimes occur in older children and adults. It usually starts with a fever, reduced appetite, sore throat and a feeling of being unwell. One or two days after the fever starts, painful sores can develop in the mouth. The mouth sores begin, often in the back of the mouth, as small red spots that blister and can become ulcers. A skin rash with red spots, and sometimes with blisters, may also develop over one or two days on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet; it may also appear on the knees, elbows, buttocks or genital area.

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