CDC: Mumps cases hit 10-year high

This 1977 thin sectioned transmission electron micrograph depicted the ultrastructural details of the mumps virions that had been grown in a Vero cell culture. (Courtesy Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

ATLANTA (WOOD) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expects the nationwide spike in mumps cases to continue into next month.

According to the CDC, the number of mumps cases hit a 10-year high late last month with 5,311 cases reported in Washington, D.C. and 46 states, including Michigan.

The health organization said two of the largest outbreaks happened on university campuses in Iowa and Illinois; 220 cases were also reported at the University of Missouri by mid-December.

The case count is lower than in 2006, when more than 6,500 people were sickened. It’s also down dramatically since the U.S. began its vaccination program in 1967. Before the push to get vaccinated, roughly 186,000 mumps cases were reported each year.

The measles, mumps and rubella vaccine prevents most, but not all cases of mumps, health officials say. Two doses of the vaccine are 88 percent effective at protecting against mumps; one dose is 78 percent effect, according to the CDC.

Mumps is typically spread by saliva and mucus. Symptoms include fever, headache, muscle acts, fatigue and loss of appetite.

It’s a virus, so antibiotics do not help. Doctors generally recommend over-the-counter pain relievers and bed rest.

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CDC on mumps