Mumps cases up to 31 on MU's campus
COLUMBIA- As of Thursday, there has been 31 confirmed cases of mumps on MU's campus.
On November 11th, 2016 MU Student Health sent an email to the student body explaining that there had been confirmed cases of mumps on campus. The email stated:
“The Student Health Center confirmed eight students have mumps and additional students are being tested. The virus is spread through saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose and throat. An infected person can spread the virus by coughing, sneezing, talking, sharing cups and utensils, or touching objects with unwashed hands that are then touched by others. To protect yourself, you should wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer. Everyone should cover their coughs and sneezes to reduce disease spread. If you suspect you might have mumps (symptoms), call your health care provider or the Health Center at 573-882-7481.”
In addition to the 31 confirmed cases, there are 27 probable cases confirmed on the MU healthcare website.
MU Healthcare defines a probable case as a person with at least two days of mumps-like symptoms and epidemiologically linked to another case.
The symptoms of mumps are much like flu symptoms. Swollen glands, fatigue, headache and earache just to name a few.
Healthcare professionals urge everyone to cover their mouths when coughing and sneezing and to make sure that they are washing their hands frequently.
Once a person has been confirmed to have mumps, they are to stay home from class and all other extracurricular activities.
MU Healthcare is working with local and state public health officials to identify other cases and help prevent them as well.
There is a mandatory MMR vaccine that students must get before coming to college, but vaccines are not always 100% effective. Trina Teacutter, from the Boone County Health Department has confirmed that every student that has been diagnosed with mumps was vaccinated.
“Mizzou has a very high number of students being vaccinated, but with the MMR vaccine there is normally 88% of students who don’t contract mumps, and the other 12% that unfortunately do” said Teacutter.
KOMU 8 talked to one student who had the third confirmed case of mumps on campus, she requested that we not use her name, but told us that she woke up on last Sunday morning not feeling well and by the next morning the side of her face under her ear was swollen. The student health center advised that her parents come and pick her up and she stay home for seven days straight.
The student also said that she was up to date on all her vaccines and she was unsure of how she contracted the mumps.
Editor's Note: This story has been updated to correct the year the email was sent from MU Student Health.