You are here

Facts about Enterovirus


Enterovirus Fact Sheet

What are Enteroviruses?
Enteroviruses are a group of viruses which are very common. Most people infected with enteroviruses do not get sick or they have only mild illness like a cold.
An estimated 10-15 million people get enterovirus infections in the US each year. Very few cases can be serious.
Infants, children and teenagers are most likely to get infected with enteroviruses.

What is Enterovirus D68?
EV-D68 is on type of enterovirus. It is not the most common type, but there have been a number of recent cases, including some that have led to hospitalizations.

What are the Symptoms?
Many people often have no symptoms at all.

Others will have cold like symptoms:

  • Runny nose
  • Sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Body aches

The following less common symptoms require Immediate Medical Attention:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Shortness of breath

How do people get EV-D68?
If you come into contact with a person who is sick, you can catch EV-D68 (just like a cold). If that person coughs or sneezes near you or if you touch a contaminated surface you can catch the EV-D68 virus. This is why frequent hand washing is so important!

What treatment is available?
There is no specific treatment for EV-D68. In many cases the symptoms of EV-D68 are mild and individuals will make a full recovery in a short amount of time. However, some people who develop difficulty breathing may need to be hospitalized.

How can I prevent the spread of EV-D68?
You and your children can help protect yourselves by following these simple steps:

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for 20 seconds, especially after changing diapers
  • Don’t touch your eyes, nose and mouth if your hands are unwashed.
  • Don’t kiss, hug or share food or drinks with someone who is sick
  • Be sure to clean frequently-touched surfaces including doorknobs and toys
  • If you are sick, stay home so you don’t get other people sick
  • If your child has asthma, be sure they follow their treatment regimens and contact their healthcare provider if there are any problems
  • Have your child vaccinated for influenza
  • If you believe your child is ill, please contact your medical provider

CDC EV-D68 Facts sheet, September 2014
Winnebago County Health Department. 2014

For more information visit