Measles is spreading quickly in the United States, with over 50 confirmed cases of measles in California, Mexico, and three other states. The first confirmed cases began in Disneyland over the holiday season, most likely from an unvaccinated infected person or family.
According to the Orange County Health Care Agency, the increase in infected persons is
indicative of its continual spread. While health officials tried their best to contain the disease, six new people who had not visited Disneyland were also infected in Orange County, with three other confirmed cases in Ventura and Alameda County as well. Dr. Eric Handler, the Orange County Public Health Officer, stated that people who have not been vaccinated need to get vaccinations in order to halt the spread of this highly contagious disease. According to the Los Angeles Times and the New York Times, most people who had been infected had not received the measles vaccination or were under immunized.
Disneyland is an entertainment Mecca for children and families from all over the world, thus further amplifying the spread of this highly contagious. Measles infects 90% of unvaccinated people who come in contact with the disease. Transmitted through sneezes or coughs, the virus can live in air droplets for up to two hours after transmission. The disease is especially contagious the first few days before a rash appears. This is especially dangerous since those who are infected are usually unaware they are carrying the virus till after physical symptoms appear. The first two weeks of symptoms are similar to any other viral infections which include fever, cough and a runny nose. Eventually, the body is covered in a rash of red dots that signal the contraction of measles.
The disease was first deemed eradicated in the United States in 2000, due to the effectiveness of the vaccine. However, with anti-vaccination parents and movements gaining popularity, it has once again returned.
Morledge Medical recommends that all patients receive the Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) vaccine. These vaccinations are normally given to children at a young age and required for admittance to schools. While the spread of Measles began in Disneyland, it has also infected those who were not at the amusement park. If you or someone you know needs the vaccination, feel free to contact our office today.