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Ottawa Public Health tracking potential local exposures to mumps

27 February 2017

"In Alberta, we recommend two doses of mumps-containing vaccine", Alberta Health Services (AHS) medical officer of health Dr.

The Alabama Department of Public Health said Friday that it's working closely with the University of Alabama after three students were recently treated for mumps, a contagious disease caused by a virus.

Complications from mumps can include encephalitis, meningitis, painful swelling of the testicles or the ovaries, pancreatitis and hearing loss.

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.

The measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine prevents most but certainly not all cases of mumps. As far as symptoms, mumps is best known for puffy cheeks and swollen jaws, but only two-thirds of infected persons experience these. People who become infected often do not show signs of the illness until 2-3 weeks after exposure.

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In the United States, 2016 saw the largest number of mumps cases in the past 10 years.

"Although the disease has not been serious, the disruption and expense it has caused for local and state health officials has been significant", said Mona Marin, a viral diseases expert with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CBC News reports said.

Once you're exposed to the virus, it can take an average of 16 to 18 days for symptoms to set in, although some infections can cause very mild symptoms, or no symptoms at all. Your healthcare provider can help you decide on vaccination needs. It is important to call your healthcare provider if you suspect mumps.

In one recent outbreak that spanned from 2015 to 2016, people at the University of IL at Urbana-Champaign started getting mumps despite the fact that majority had received two recommended mumps vaccines. Most children got the virus by the time they were 14 years old. Mumps is considered a preventable disease as anyone with an up-to-date vaccination is highly unlikely to contract mumps.