The Florida Department of Health in Duval County has confirmed one case of mumps, and the Florida Department of Health in St. Johns County has identified two probable cases of mumps. The three individuals are young adults with close contact with each other. Local health officials are working to limit potential exposure. Public health officials are in the process of notifying individuals with exposure risks.
Mumps is a contagious respiratory disease caused by the mumps virus and is spread by talking, coughing or sneezing as well as sharing items, such as cups or eating utensils with others, and touching objects or surfaces with unwashed hands that are then touched by others.
Mumps is best known for the puffy cheeks and swollen jaw it causes as a result of swollen salivary glands. Symptoms usually appear 16-18 days after infection, yet can range from 12-25 days. The most common symptoms include: fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, loss of appetite, swollen and tender salivary glands under the ears on one or both sides.
“In many instances, mumps is relatively mild, but it has the potential to cause long-term health problems,” said Kelli Wells, MD, Deputy Secretary for Health and Director of the Florida Department of Health in Duval County. “The best way to protect yourself, your loved ones and your community from the spread of the mumps virus is to make sure your measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine is current.”
“These cases serve as a reminder for all residents to check their immunization records or contact their primary care provider’s office to make sure they are up to date on the mumps vaccine as well as all recommended vaccines,” said Dawn Allicock, MD, MPH, CPH, Director/Health Officer of the Florida Department of Health in St. Johns County.
Children should be immunized against mumps with the combination measles, mumps and rubella vaccine (MMR) vaccine. Children should receive two doses, with the first at 12 to 15 months of age, and the second at four to six years of age. Adolescents and adults may require two doses of MMR and people with underlying health conditions should discuss additional booster doses with their health care provider. The department encourages all Floridians who have not been immunized to get vaccinated.
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