Students in Scappoose exposed to contagious disease

KPTV photo.

SCAPPOSE, OR (KPTV) - A contagious disease that most commonly affects toddlers has popped up at a couple of local schools.

The Scappoose School District sent a letter to parents Wednesday night to inform them of a recent outbreak of Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease.

Superintendent Paul Peterson said Thursday that district custodians are working to sanitize items such as lockers and desktops to help contain it.

“A lot of people kind of talk about it and say that’s like, nasty, but we’re not really scared of it,” Corbin Edson, a junior at Scappoose High School, said.

District nurse Brenda Vandomelen said the majority of the cases happened at Scappoose High School, with one reported case at the middle school.

“I heard it from other students around the school talk about it and how it was going on in some sports teams,” Danielle Trenkler, a senior at Scappoose High School, said.

According to district officials, the first case was reported last week. Since then, there have been several students who have shown symptoms of HFMD.

“There’s been about 10 to 12 cases so far,” Vandomelen said.

While the district says the reported number is small, officials still want to share precautions that parents and students can take to help prevent new cases.

Nurse Vandomelen wants parents to know how to spot the symptoms of HFMD, which include fever, reduced appetite, sore throat and a skin rash.

“They generally develop some blisters on the palms of their hands or the bottom of their feet, as well as in their mouth or throat area,” Vandomelen said.

Since it is a virus, there is no vaccine to cure it, according to Vandomelen. However, she says, pain relievers and throat numbing sprays can be given to those who get the disease.

To stop it from spreading, she recommends parents not send their kids to school if they’re experiencing a fever, and to wait a full 24 hours after the fever has broken to send them back. She also suggests students wash their hands frequently–a suggestion many Scappoose High School students are taking seriously.

“I wash my hands often, but even more often now," senior Ian Johnson said. "I don’t want it. I don’t want to make anyone else sick."

If your child attends school in the Scappoose School District and they begin to feel symptoms of HFMD, you can call the district nurse at 971-200-8033 to report it.

Copyright 2018 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

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