In a follow-up on the mumps outbreak at Purdue University, state health officials reported Friday that the case count at the West Lafayette, Indiana campus increased by 17 confirmed cases during the past week, bringing the total to 48.
Informational signs are again being sent to building deputies for posting in campus facilities to let people know that cases have been reported and listing preventative measures.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, symptoms for mumps include fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, loss of appetite, and swollen and tender salivary glands under the ears on one or both sides. Mumps is spread from direct and indirect contact with an infected person’s respiratory droplets, which can be transmitted by sneezing and coughing. People with mumps can spread their infections for up to two days before and five days after the onset of symptoms. Anyone with symptoms is highly encouraged to stay home and avoid others to prevent the further spread of illness and to seek care as soon as possible.
Mumps is caused by a virus, so antibiotics are not indicated. Symptoms typically appear 16-18 days after infection but can range from 12-25 days. Generally, mumps is a mild illness, and some people may not have any symptoms. While complications and more serious issues can result from a mumps infection, they are generally rare, with a 1 percent to 3 percent complication rate.
University members who have not already done so are encouraged to check their vaccination records with their primary care provider and obtain copies if needed. The best way to prevent mumps is to be vaccinated with two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, or MMR. Individuals born after 1957 who have not had two doses of vaccine or are unable to find their records are encouraged to seek advice from a health care provider or contact the local health department on receiving an MMR vaccine. Persons born before 1957 are considered to be immune to mumps due to the high rate of infection prior to routine vaccination. Two doses of vaccine are only considered around 88 percent effective at preventing infection, so some people who have been fully vaccinated with two MMRs may still contract mumps.
In addition, the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) reported additional cases at Indiana University in Bloomington and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI).
Approximately 200 cases have been reported by the ISDH including 49 cases without known links to any university outbreaks.
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