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Measles: Signs and symptoms of a disease many thought irradicated

Tongues look like this first with Measles
Tongues look like this first with Measles
CDC on Measles

This is the second major notice of outbreaks of measles infections in the United States in the last 12 months. The preceding questions were concentrated in Texas, in August 2013.

Measles is a preventable disease, known to many as a childhood illness. One in a trinity of vaccination, MMR, the Measles, Mumps, Rubella inoculation is given in two doses. The first is noted to have 85% effectiveness, while the second provides the full expression of immunity to the illness. Once infected, a person merely has to let the illness run it's course.

Exposure happens four days prior to symptoms. The first symptom is the one in the photo, the tongue presents with spots. Then, a rash appears at the hairline and moves down the body. A person is infectious four days before symptoms begin, and four days after the rash subsides. Roughly 10 days? Skin sloughs off for many days after, again see the photos. This map from the World Health Organization is an infographic for many illnesses presence on the globe. WHO collects information world wide on the presence of the disease, and attempts to inoculate people.

Many people believed the United States was going to be completely free of measles in 2010 due to progress made in no cases noted, or progressive lowering numbers of cases. Many people believe they have been inoculated and they have not, or have traveled to or come from countries where the disease is active. Global travel provides the chance for spread.

In the late 1970's there were outbreaks in the US in prisons and university campuses. All hot spots for heavy interface of large numbers of people, as are day care sites, schools and skilled nursing facilities. It wasn't clear if the coverage of immunization was spotty in that people did not get vaccinated, or there was some fading result of the vaccination batch of vaccine, or that one, not two doses given. This writer still seeking that data.

As a health campaign then, Baby Boomers were re-vaccinated in order to ensure complete coverage and case numbers dropped significantly. The gatekeeper function was the school system, that the vaccination records had to be on file to enroll and attend school. There isn't a clear article that relates this process, or indicates what if any percentage of the tnen young people then were missed due to not being in schools or in some tractable location for checks and balances of the effectiveness of the campaign for all. Those persons these days are all moving towards grandparenting/retirement age, if they aren't already.

The article at the top of this page notes that NY Health Department is suggesting that ALL persons in the area in question get vaccinated, or submit to a blood test to prove immunity. No access to immunization records is an indication of a need to confirm health status in a potential epidemic containment effort.

Oklahoma City County Health Department has a full service of immunization programming for children and youth or adults. Peripheral symptoms of measles are ear infection and risk for encephalitis. So the bout of measles may not be limited to the rash, fever and exhaustion, conjunctivitis and irritability present for most people. Older adults or others who are immune compromised are at risk for infection and perhaps should consult with their private physician regarding steps of prevention.

Below are three recent and interesting articles posted on the American Academy of Pediatrics page, the kid doctor home professional webpage in the United States. Importance of vaccinations Jan 2014 Reluctant parents August 2013 Peds versus other MD use of vaccination on own kids. Fall 2013

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