Despite several cases in Cortland, doctors say don't worry about hand, foot, mouth disease

Jessalyn Collins, 6, has been home sick with hand, foot, mouth disease for six days.

It's been a rough week for mother Jessica Collins, at her Cortland home with two sick little girls.

"They've been tired and aggravated. It hurts to open up their mouths to eat it hurts to swallow," says Collins.

What started out as a stomach and fever turned into sores

indicating the girls are suffering from hand, foot, mouth disease.


s the name implies, symptoms include rashes on the palms, soles, and mouth

, but Dr. Leonard Weiner with Upstate University Hospital says those sores don't make it anymore contagious.

"The lesions on the hands or the sores in the mouth do not make it anymore contagious. Those legions are not contagious," says Dr. Weiner.

While hand, foot, and mouth disease may sound nasty, it's just another common virus according to Dr. Weiner. The sores are just one of the symptoms.

"Just because we can call it hand, foot, mouth because we know what it looks like doesn't make it any worse or better or difference then the group of illnesses caused by this group of viruses," says Dr. Weiner.

Once you determine that your child does have hand, foot, mouth disease

, patience is key

. Treat their symptoms like fever and stomach ache and remember its a virus, something antibiotics can't treat


School officials in Cortland are reporting five cases of hand, foot and mouth disease among students.

Superintendent Michael Hoose says there have been five cases in the last three weeks district wide. None of the cases are in the same school building.

Hoose says he would not call this an outbreak, and says letters were sent home to parents.