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Herpangina is the name given to painful mouth and throat ulcers due to a viral infection and usually occurs in childhood.

It is usually caused by coxsackie A16 virus and is highly contagious. Other common coxsackie A viruses isolated from herpangina are A1-10, 12 and 22. Less common causes are coxsackie B1-5, echoviruses, enterovirus 71, herpes simplex virus, parechovirus 1 and adenoviruses.

Signs and Symptoms

Painful tiny vesicles and erosions are distributed on soft palate, uvulva, tonsillar pillars and posterior pharynx. Erosions typically have a rim of erythema and a yellow-gray coating. Fever is common.

Erosions persit for approximately 7 days.


Generally, simple supportive measures (oral fluids, analgesics and antipyretics) are adequate for Herpangina. Herpangina is a self-limited illness.

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