Penn State students warned of confirmed mumps cases on campus

Penn State students warned of confirmed mumps cases on campus

McGeer explained that when the mumps and measles vaccine was introduced, only one dose was administered but it later became apparent that two doses were needed for it to be effective over the long term.

"For those who have not received it (mumps immunization), the nurses are well aware", she said.

The university is working with the Monroe County Health Department and the Indiana State Department of Health to identify and directly notify anyone who may have been in close contact with the students.

"There are a number of ways it can be spread", Dr. Chris Sikora with AHS said. Certain behaviors that result in exchanging saliva, such as kissing or sharing utensils, drinking after persons, and sharing lipstick or cigarettes, might increase spread of the virus. "So if we touch infected items and then touch our nose and mouth and eyes we can contract illness that way very much like influenza". It is as contagious as flu and those infected usually are contagious before symptoms appear and for a few days after, so they can spread the virus without realizing it, according to the announcement. People with mumps can spread their infections for up to two days before and five days after the onset of symptoms.

Five of the cases are men with orchitis, or the painful swelling of the testicles, and about 60 per cent of the cases were not immunized or did not have both doses of the vaccine.

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Arnason said in general, people with mumps symptoms have not been fully immunized, usually having had only one dose of the MMR vaccine.

If you get mumps, take medicine to help relieve fever or headache as required, use ice or a heat pack on swollen areas, drink additional fluids to reduce fever and prevent dehydration, and suck on ice chips or flavoured ice pops and eat soft foods that don't require chewing.

Protect other people - Stay away from other people to avoid exposing them to mumps.

There is no treatment for mumps but there is prevention.

Vaccinating your child is important because mumps has the potential of causing serious problems and is a contagious disease that can cause outbreaks.

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