Mumps

Mumps (caused by the Rubulavirus)

An infectious acute viral disease affecting the parotid glands. The gonads, meninges and pancreas can also be affected. The causative agent is a paramyxovirus. Humans are the only natural host for this disease.

Common symptoms include weakness, fever, sore throat, malaise and puffiness to the cheeks (due to parotid gland swelling). Patients are contagious 3 days prior to the onset of symptoms until the swelling is gone (approx. 9 days after) (range 6 days before - 12 days after). Recovery is generally in 2 weeks. The disease is spread through direct contact with saliva, respiratory secretions, airborne dropelets or fomites.

A vaccine against mumps was licenced in 1967. Since the vaccine, outbreaks in the US are not that common, but 16,000 cases were reported in England, in 2004.

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