Mumps Outbreak in the Midwest

By: Jessica Aspiras
By: Jessica Aspiras

After 20 years of remaining somewhat dormant, mumps is now back. And it's making its way through the Midwest. Currently the highest number of reported cases is in Iowa. The state has confirmed that 605 people have come down with the illness. Next, is Illinois with 72 cases and Nebraska with 71. But other states with higher than usual numbers include Kansas, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. Here in Michigan the number is simply one.

Dr. Dean Sienko of the Ingham County Health Department says we are on track for a small amount of cases because in the past few years only about 10 were reported for entire 12 month periods. Still he says the department will remain on the lookout.

"We will be watching closely here in Michigan and seeing if it poses a threat to people in the community. If so, we'll get the word out. It's best to be protected and be fully immunized so we recommend to anyone that they talk to their health care provider if they aren't sure."

Symptoms of mumps include a fever, sore throat, and most noticeably swollen glands. It's contagious and passed through things like sneezing, coughing, and sharing glasses. If you or your child hasn't received the MMR vaccination, contact your local health department.

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