University of Dayton confirms mumps on campus

Francis Osborne
February 25, 2017

The Pennsylvania Department of Health has launched an investigation into several reported cases of mumps on the Penn State University Park campus.

All students, faculty and staff should check with their health care providers to confirm receipt of two doses of the MMR vaccine after their first birthday. "For this age group, it's a good time to check and make sure they've had two doses", said Dr. Allison McGeer, director of infection control at Toronto's Mount Sinai Hospital.

There is a mumps vaccine.

High vaccination helps to limit the size, duration and spread of mumps, according to the health department.

There is important information you should know to avoid getting the virus and managing it if you do. "If they didn't happen then everybody got sick".

"In some cases, as many as three out of 10 cases, there can be swelling of testicles - orchitis - and in some very unusual or rare circumstances, like less than one in 1,000, people can have difficulty like pancreatitis, meningitis, and/or much more serious concerns", Sikora said. Lenore Bromley noted, however, that the risk to the general public was low. Of those 19 cases, four have been confirmed by lab tests.

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The mumps virus is found in saliva and respiratory droplets and is spread through coughing, sneezing and coming into contact with saliva by kissing, sharing drinks, utensils, food or water bottles.

To find out if there are special recommendations in your community, contact your local public health department.

AHS said the virus is easily spread in crowded environments.

"There is no treatment for mumps but there is prevention", the announcement read. Other symptoms include fever, headache, muscle pain, tiredness and loss of appetite.

Meanwhile, officials said a number of cases have been identified in the Medicine Hat and Lethbridge areas - and the number of cases will likely go up. Generally, mumps is a mild illness, and some people may not have any symptoms. The first case was confirmed on January 29.

He said without a centralized database on people's immunization history, the onus is on individuals to be aware of their own records and to take the necessary steps to protect themselves through various vaccination programs.

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