Two additional cases of measles have been identified in Brisbane, bringing to 10 the total number of cases reported since mid-July.
Metro North Public Health Unit (MNPHU) Physician Dr James Smith said that unlike previous cases, neither of the two latest cases was a student at the University of Queensland, but both have links to a known UQ case.
Dr Smith said these cases had visited the following locations in Brisbane while infectious:
- Ipswich/ Rosewood train line between Zillmere and Toowong on Wednesday 02/09/2015 and Thursday 03/09/2015, arriving at Toowong at approximately 3pm and returning to Zillmere at approximately 9.15pm each day
- Coles, Toowong on evenings of Wednesday 02/09/2015 and Thursday 03/09/2015 at approximately 8pm
- Toowong Village Shopping Centre, between 4pm and 8pm on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday last week (01/03/09/2015)
- Shell Service Station, Coronation Drive, Milton at around 8pm on Thursday 03/09/2015
- 7-Eleven, Creek Road, Carina approximately 10pm on Friday 04/09/2015
MNPHU continues to advise students and the general public to be aware of the early symptoms of measles and to avoid work, school and social gatherings when unwell.
“Measles symptoms usually start around 10 days after contact, but can occur between seven and 18 days after contact with an infectious person,” Dr Smith said.
“The initial symptoms of measles include fever, lethargy, runny nose, moist cough and sore and red eyes. This is followed a few days later by a blotchy, red rash. The rash often starts on the face then becomes widespread over the body.
“It’s important for people to know that measles is infectious for four days before the rash appears.”
Dr Smith said measles is highly contagious and is spread by way of tiny droplets created during coughing and sneezing. The droplets can remain suspended in the air.
He encouraged people to check if they need to be vaccinated against measles.
Queensland Health recommends anyone born during or since 1966, who has not had two documented doses of measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine or had proven measles, should visit their family doctor to get vaccinated for measles. The vaccine is free for anyone who requires it.
Anyone who thinks they may have measles should seek medical advice.
“It’s very important to call the medical practice first to say you could have measles, so that staff can take precautions to avoid spreading the disease to others,” Dr Smith said.