Kansas health officials looks to prevent the spread of mumps

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Kansas health officials looks to prevent the spread of mumps

As of March 4, 2017, 56 mumps cases have been reported in Kansas across multiple counties.

There are 56 reported cases across 12 counties: Atchison, Barton, Crawford, Douglas, Ellis, Finney, Franklin, Johnson, Marshall, Riley, Rooks and Thomas. Most people with the virus show only mild or no symptoms, and almost half who get mumps exhibit very mild or no symptoms, according to the health department.

The CDC recommends that children get two doses of the MMR vaccine, starting with the first dose around their first birthday, and the second dose when the child is between 4 and 6 years old.

If you think you have mumps, you should isolate yourself and contact a health care provider. "Testing and supportive treatment could then be provided if needed". According to the health department, other schools like the Station and the Prairie middle school located in the same area were reported with one probable and nine suspected cases of mumps.

"As we continue to see mumps cases throughout the state and region, I encourage Kansans to take precautions to prevent the spread of the disease", KDHE Secretary Susan Mosier said. "The vaccine against mumps is extremely effective and usually produces long lasting immunity", Mark Pfister, executive director of the health department, said in a statement.

According to the Center for Disease Control, the vaccine for mumps is about 88 percent effective.

Mumps is a contagious disease caused by a virus that spreads through saliva. Symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness and loss of appetite, followed by swollen salivary glands.

Complications from mumps, although rare, can include inflammation of the testicles, ovaries, breasts and/or brain, according to the health department. Most people recover within a few weeks but it can occasionally cause serious illness, especially in adults. They should also frequently disinfect touched surfaces such as toys, doorknobs, tables and counters.

People between the ages of 22 and 47 need to make sure they've had the booster shot for the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine (MMR) if they only received one vaccine in the past, Kempkens said.

More than 5,300 mumps cases were reported in the U.S.in 2016, according to the CDC. "Cases commonly occur in places where people have had prolonged, close contact with a person who has mumps, such as attending the same class, playing on the same sports team, or living in the same dormitory".

Doctors posit that the best way to avoid affliction is to get vaccinated.

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