SALEM, Ore. – Marion County Health is investigating a suspected case of the measles amid a growing regional outbreak of the highly contagious disease.
Officials with the health department say the state Public Health Lab are testing a sample from the patient to confirm whether it is connected to the other 57 cases – four in Multnomah County and 53 in Clark County.
Clark County reported Saturday it had no new confirmed cases.
Measles symptoms begin with a mild fever, cough, runny nose and red eyes, followed by a rash.
If you or your child went to one of the possible exposure sites and show signs of measles, call your health care provider before coming in so they can limit exposing anyone else in the waiting room.
The Oregon Health Authority has set up a call center for general questions about the measles – you can reach it by dialing 2-1-1 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.
Of the Clark County measles cases, officials say most patients were not immunized, six people were not verified to have had the vaccine, and one person received only one dose of the MMR vaccine.
The CDC says one dose of the MMR vaccine is 93 percent effective, while having two doses of the vaccine is 97 percent effective.
Children typically receive the first MMR vaccine at one year to 15 months old, and the second dose from 4 to 6 years of age.
MORE MEASLES INFORMATION FROM MARION COUNTY HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES:
Measles poses the highest risk to unvaccinated pregnant women, infants under 12 months of age, and people with weakened immune systems.
The symptoms of measles start with a fever, cough, runny nose and red eyes, followed by a rash that usually begins on the face and spreads to the rest of the body.
Common complications of measles include ear infection, lung infection, and diarrhea. Swelling of the brain is a rare but much more serious complication.
After someone contracts measles, illness develops in about two weeks, but people can be contagious days before they know they’re sick.
Measles is a highly contagious virus that spreads through the air after a person with measles coughs or sneezes. People are contagious with measles for four days before the rash appears and up to four days after the rash appears. The virus can also linger in the air for up to two hours after someone who is infectious has left.
A person is considered immune to measles if ANY of the following apply:
1.You were born before 1957.
2.Your physician has diagnosed you with measles.
3.A blood test proves that you are immune.
You have been fully vaccinated against measles (one dose for children 12 months through 3 years old, two doses in anyone 4 years and older).