Once Thought Gone, Measles Making A Comeback
It was once thought that measles had been eliminated from the United States, but the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention reports 555 confirmed cases have been reported this year. That number is the second-highest total recorded since 2000. Cases in Illinois and downstate Michigan have been reported.
Measles is an infectious viral disease causing fever and a red rash on the skin, typically occurring in childhood.
Oneida County Public Health Nurse Jennifer Bates says with summer approaching, the spread of the disease is possible..
"...We're trying to be vigilant and try to prevent as much as possible. We're going to have people traveling soon, all kinds of people coming up north to visit our lovely Northwoods..."
Bates says measles is highly contagious....
"One person can affect 9 out of 10 people around them who don't have protected immune systems. It's pretty contagious. It's serious enough that it could result in hospitalization and could result in death..."
It's recommended that children get the first dose of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine between the ages of 12 and 15 months and the second dose between the ages of 4 and 6 years old.
Measles is spread in the air through coughing and sneezing. Measles signs and symptoms appear around 10 to 14 days after exposure to the virus. Signs and symptoms of measles typically include fever, dry cough, runny nose, sore throat and a skin rash made up of large, flat blotches among other symptoms.
Contact your local public health department or physician for more information.