The Division of Public Health (DPH) has identified four more cases of the mumps in Delaware as part of its ongoing investigation of an outbreak among attendees at two multi-cultural dances in New Castle County, bringing the total number of mumps cases in 2018 to 19.

mumpsAt least 11 of the 19 persons with mumps attended either the Feb. 10, or March 3, 2018, social dance (Baile Mexicano) that took place at the Chase Center on the Riverfront in Wilmington. All 19 individuals reside in New Castle County. The age ranges of adults with the mumps virus are 21 to 57 years old. Additionally, there was one child under the age of 5 infected.

This is the first time that more than three mumps cases have been recorded during any calendar year since at least 2005. DPH recommends that anyone who attended either the Feb. 10 or March 3, 2018, dances contact their primary care physician to determine if they may have contracted mumps and if they and their family or close contacts need to receive vaccination against mumps.

“It’s extremely important to do everything you can do to protect yourself and your family from diseases like the mumps,” said DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay. “The best protection against mumps is to make sure you and everyone in your home is up to date on their mumps vaccinations. Since everyone needs at least two vaccinations, and sometimes even three, knowing your vaccine schedule is vital.”

Symptoms typically start with a few days of fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite, followed by swollen salivary glands, which results in puffy cheeks and a swollen jaw. Symptoms typically appear 16 to 18 days after infection, but can range from 12 to 25 days after infection. Some people with mumps may not have any symptoms. Most people with mumps recover completely in a few weeks. However, mumps can occasionally cause complications, especially in adults.

People known or suspected to have mumps should stay away from school or work until five days after the onset of swollen salivary glands, as there is no specific treatment for mumps.

The CDC recommends children get two doses of MMR vaccine, starting with the first dose at 12 to 15 months of age, and the second dose at 4 to 6 years of age. Teens and adults who did not get the recommended MMR vaccines per the above schedule should be vaccinated so they are up to date. During outbreaks, the CDC also recommends that those at highest risk due to exposure to people with mumps should receive a third dose of MMR.