Three additional confirmed measles cases have been reported in the metro Atlanta area, bringing the total cases in Georgia this year to six.

This was a patient who presented with Koplik’s spots on palate due to pre-eruptive measles on day 3 of the illness./CDC

The three individuals are all members of one family – none of whom were vaccinated.

The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) says while the risk of becoming sick is low, they are notifying individuals who may have been exposed to the virus and may be at increased risk for developing measles.

Measles is a highly contagious, serious respiratory disease. It is particularly dangerous for infants who cannot be immunized until they are at least 12 months old and young children who have only received one dose of measles vaccine.

The MMR vaccine is safe and effective. Two doses of MMR vaccine are about 97% effective at preventing measles; one dose is about 93% effective.

Measles spreads when an infected person breathes, coughs, or sneezes and respiratory droplets travel through the air. Measles virus can live in the air and on surfaces for two to three hours. Almost everyone who has not been vaccinated will get measles if they are exposed to the virus.

Symptoms of measles include: Fever (can be very high); Cough, runny nose and red eyes; Tiny white spots on the inner lining of the cheek – also called Koplik’s spots and a Rash of tiny, red spots that start at the head and spreads to the rest of the body (spots may become joined together as they spread).

As of April 24, 2019, CDC is reporting 695 cases of measles from 22 states. This is the greatest number of cases reported in the United States since measles was eliminated from this country in 2000.