3D graphical representation of a spherical-shaped, measles virus particle that is studded with glycoprotein tubercles. Photo courtesy of the CDC: photographer
Illustrator: Alissa Eckert https://phil.cdc.gov/details.aspx?pid=21074

Are you ready for it? This is not a drill people. There is a measles outbreak in the USA. Measles had been declared eradicated by the CDC in the year 2000, there has now been a resurgence.

How many people are sick so far?

This is a bar graph from the CDC indicating the number of cases of measles over the years from 2010 until the present date. It was last updated Monday, April 26th, 2019. It is updated weekly. https://www.cdc.gov/measles/cases-outbreaks.html

What season would you expect to see Measles?

In temperate zones, the incidence tends to peak in late winter and in early spring, whereas in tropical zones it occurs during the dry season.

Measles rash, photo courtesy of the CDC. http://www.vaccineinformation.org/photos/meascdc004.jpg

How long is the incubation period?

Per the WHO the incubation period is 10-14 days from exposure to onset of rash and patients are contagious from about 4 days before the onset of a rash until 4 days after the rash. This means that the individual may not know that he or she is ill and will be unintentionally infecting other people. This is especially problematic with international travelers and students at a university.

What are the symptoms of measles?

A child with measles with conjunctivitis, taken in 1999, picture courtesy of the CDC: https://phil.cdc.gov/details.aspx?pid=989

The patient presents with symptoms of high fever (can be as high as 105 degrees), cough, nasal congestion, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). Ummm….this sounds like a viral respiratory tract infection. Measles is a virus, so it is like that. But then the rash comes…The typical maculopapular rash appears after 3-4 days and this is accompanied by a fever 102-104 degrees. Patients should improve after the 3rd day after the rash appears and should be fully recovered 7-10 days after onset of the disease.

How contagious is Measles?

Highly contagious. In fact, 9 out of 10 people will get sick with it if they have in some way come into contact or crossed paths with a sick person. The droplets can stay in the air for 2 hours after the person has left a room and infect the next person. The MMR vaccines (1st shot) covers 93% protection, the 2nd shot covers 97% protection. If a vaccinated person does get sick it will be a very mild form of the disease.

Boy with Day 3 Measles rash, photo courtesy of CDC:https://phil.cdc.gov/details.aspx?pid=1150

Stay tuned for my next blog on the complications and treatment of Measles. For more information, please feel free to see my post on it in the blog: Authentic Medicine. Contact me at info@adoctorsview.com if you need more information on how to improve your health