BRAZOS COUNTY, Texas -- Three cases of mumps have been reported in Brazos County.
The Brazos County Health Department has received reports of one confirmed case and two suspected cases of mumps.
All 3 cases have been college-aged, young adults. At this time, the local cases do not seem to be connected to the cases reported in those patients that traveled to South Padre Island.
Concerns about mumps have heightened since a state-wide health advisory was released yesterday by the Texas Department of State Health Services.
Several states, including Texas, has reported positive mumps cases in individuals who traveled to South Padre Island over the middle of March.
Mumps symptoms include swollen or tender salivary glands, swollen or tender testicles, low fever, tiredness and muscle aches. People usually develop symptoms 16-18 days after being exposed to the virus, but it can be as long as 25 days. People who think they have mumps should contact their health care provider, and anyone suspected of having mumps should stay home while they’re contagious – five days after swollen glands occur.
Mumps is highly contagious and is spread through coughing and sneezing and sharing cups and utensils. The mumps vaccine is the best way to keep from getting mumps, and research shows the mumps vaccine protects 88 percent of people who are fully vaccinated. However, some vaccinated people still get sick if they’re exposed to the virus, so it’s also important for people to help stop the spread of mumps by covering coughs and sneezes, washing their hands frequently with soap and water, and not sharing food and drinks.
If you don’t know your vaccination status, talk to your health care provider about getting vaccinated.
More information on mumps can be found at http://www.dshs.texas.gov/idcu/disease/mumps/