Since the beginning of the Fall Semester in August, 228 cases of mumps have been identified (both confirmed and probable) in Mizzou students, according to the University of Missouri Student Health Center (SHC).

Mumps virus/CDC
Mumps virus/CDC

Most of the students are reporting associations with friends who have mumps, Greek organizations, or interactions in local bars.

The SHC does note that the number of cases represents less than 1 percent of students and that that vast majority recovered (190), meaning they are no longer infectious.

The outbreak has prompted student health to recommend a 3rd Measles/Mumps/Rubella (MMR) vaccine.

Mumps is caused by a respiratory virus, whose symptoms include painful swelling of the salivary glands near the ears and under the jaw, which can occur on one or both sides of the face. This swelling may be associated with other non-specific symptoms, such as fever, headache, muscle aches, fatigue and decreased appetite.

The transmission of mumps is through close contact, sharing of utensils, drinking glasses, and saliva contact (kissing). Washing hands is recommended per the Centers for Disease Control.

Nationally, the CDC has received reports of more than 4,200 mumps cases through Dec. 3, the most cases seen in a decade.