ADPH: Several UA students diagnosed with mumps

The best way to prevent mumps is to be vaccinated with two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine (MMR).

And a hockey team based in Medicine Hat, Alta. had seven players and a coach with mumps, Alberta Health Services said.

Mumps symptoms often include tender swollen glands below the ear or along the jawline on one or both sides of the face and neck, headache, fever and cold-like symptoms.

"All we can do is tell the students about proper hand-washing techniques, covering your mouth while coughing, and staying home when you are sick", she said.

The Centers for Disease Control has reported mumps cases are at a 10-year nationwide high with cases in 46 states in the last year. Complications from mumps, although rare, can include inflammation of the testicles, ovaries, breasts and/or brain. Treatment provides relief for the symptoms, which should disappear in about a week. Two MMR doses are approximately 97% effective at preventing measles, and a single dose is about 97% effective at preventing rubella.

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He noted that when the vaccine for mumps was first introduced in 1970, the initial recommendation was for a single dose - but two doses has been the recommendation since 1996.

TPH said those who have symptoms or who have been in contact with someone who has mumps to contact their doctor and inform them before going to their office so they can prepare and protect other patients.

Those who think they may have the mumps should immediately call their health care provider. "ADPH strongly recommends students who do not have any record of MMR and decline to be vaccinated should not attend class for 25 days after exposure to mumps". The students isolated themselves for the recommended five days and no longer have symptoms.

In a statement issued Friday, the department says it is working with the university's health services to investigate additional potential cases. Professionals have been in contact with those closely associated with the infected individuals and continue to monitor each situation carefully.

  • Ismael Montgomery