Mumps Outbreak In Missouri
Living in Missouri doesn’t come with many health threats, however studies show that there has been a recent mumps outbreak occurring in February and March this year. According to the CDC, there have been more than 1,077 people reported to have mumps the last couple of months with Missouri being the second highest target for the disease with a reported 300 cases. Most cases have been reported across the state at university campus’.
What Is Mumps?
If you’re like me and have never heard of mumps don’t worry. Mumps usually isn’t dangerous but can be if not treated.
Mumps can be serious, but most people with mumps recover completely in a few weeks. While infected with mumps, many people feel tired and achy, have a fever, and swollen salivary glands on the side of the face. Others may feel extremely ill and be unable to eat because of jaw pain, and a few will develop serious complications. Men and adolescent boys can develop pain or swelling in their testicles, which rarely results in sterility. Inflammation of the protective membranes covering the brain and spinal cord (meningitis) and loss of hearing can also occur, and in rare cases, this hearing loss can be permanent. The most serious complication is inflammation of the brain (encephalitis), which can lead to death or permanent disability.
How do I prevent mumps from spreading?
Good question, according to the CDC you should do the following:
- Covering your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, and put your used tissue in the trash can. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow, not your hands.
- Washing your hands often with soap and water.
- Avoiding sharing drinks or eating utensils.
- Disinfecting frequently touched surfaces, such as toys, doorknobs, tables, counters.
If you feel you’re in danger of getting mumps you should be sure you’re up to date on your MMR vaccine. If you feel you actually have mumps, you should go to the doctor right away.
Considering that the outbreak of this disease is occurring on college campus’, you might want to reach out to your daughters, sons, friends and co-workers who are attending college classes and warn them of the disease.
Where can I be treated?
As always, enjoy your day!
Corey Myers is the Outreach & Enrollment Specialist for Northwest Health Services and works with healthcare professionals to provide important health information.