Skip to content
foot-and-mouth diseaseJoe Segen2016-12-07T17:43:06+00:00
Definition An infection of cloven-hoofed barnyard beasts by a picornavirus, genus Aphthovirus, which has an RNA clothed in a naked icosahedral nucleocapsid.
Clinical findings in animals High fever that falls rapidly after 2-3 days, intraoral blisters leading to secretion of stringy or foamy saliva and to drooling, and foot blisters that may rupture and cause lameness. Adult animals lose weight and need months to regain it. The testicles of mature males swell; in cows, milk production may drop precipitously. While most animals recover over time, FMD can lead to myocarditis and death, especially in newborns. Some infected animals remain asymptomatic, but carry the virus and can transmit it to others.
Clinical findings in humans Über rare; malaise, fever, vomiting, reddish oral ulcers, scattered skin vesicles.
Modes of transmission Aerosols, contact with contaminated farm equipment, vehicles, clothing, or feed, and by domestic and wild predators
Susceptible animals Cattle, water buffalo, sheep, goats, pigs, antelope, deer, bison
Management Despite the low mortality–2 to 5%–FMD is usually managed in non-vaccinated animals with the draconian slaughter of all potentially exposed animals.
Synonyms Aftosa, aphthae epizooticae, aphthobullous stomatitis, aphthosa, aphthous fever, contagious aphthae, epizootic aphthae, epizootic stomatitis, hoof-and-mouth disease, malignant aphthae