Background: There has been a high mortality and morbidity rate of critical and fatal patients from hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) in China in recent. Causes for development of critical and fatal disease remain unclear.
Methods: We performed a case-control study to assess the association between use of drugs and development of critical disease and death from HFMD.
Results: We found that glucocorticoids treatment was associated with a greater incidence of severe HFMD, whereas andrographolides treatment was associated with a protective effect when they are used for treatment within 48 hours after onset or before being diagnosed as critical.
Conclusions: We recommend that glucocorticoids should not be used for mild HFMD and andrographolides should undergo clinical trials for treatment of enterovirus 71 infections.