Overview

Non-polio enteroviruses are very common viruses. They cause 10 to 15 million infections in the United States each year.


Basics

Types of non-polio enteroviruses
  • Coxsackievirus A
  • Coxsackievirus B
  • Echoviruses
  • Enterovirus D68

Anyone can get infected with non-polio enteroviruses. But infants, children, and teenagers are more likely to get infected and become sick. That's because they do not yet have immunity (protection) from previous exposures to the viruses.

  • Most people who get infected with non-polio enteroviruses do not get sick. Or, they may have mild illness, like the common cold.
  • Some people can get very sick and have infection in their heart or brain. Infants and people with weakened immune systems are more susceptible to these sorts of complications.

You can get infected with non-polio enteroviruses by having close contact with an infected person. You can also get infected by touching objects or surfaces that have the virus on them then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes.

In the United States, people are more likely to get infected with non-polio enteroviruses in the summer and fall.

Symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Runny nose, sneezing, cough
  • Skin rash
  • Mouth blisters
  • Body and muscle aches

Less common symptoms:

  • Heart infection
  • Brain infection
  • Paralysis

Non-polio enteoviruses can be found in an infected person’s

  • Stool
  • Eyes, nose and mouth secretions (saliva or mucus)
  • Blister fluid

Exposure to the virus through:

  • Having close contact with an infected person (through touching)
  • Touching objects or surfaces that have the virus on them 
  • Changing diapers of an infected person
  • Drinking water that contains the virus 

By then touching your eyes, nose or mouth before washing your hands, you can get infected with the virus.


What is Enterovirus D68?


Recommendations

Currently, there is no vaccine to protect you from non-polio enterovirus infection. Many infected people never have symptoms for the virus, so it is difficult to prevent non-polio enteroviruses from spreading.

You can protect yourself and others from non-polio enterovirus infections by:

  • Washing your hands with soap and water, especially after using the toilet or changing diapers
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick (no touching and shaking hands)
  • Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces
Treatment
  • There is no specific treatment for non-polio enterovirus infection.
  • Those with mild illness caused by the viruses usually only need symptom treatment. People infected typically recover quickly. However, some illnesses caused by non-polio enteroviruses can require hospitalization.

Related Facts

In 2014, there were 1,153 confirmed cases of Enterovirus-D68 in the U.S. (CDC)

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