Are You Protected Against Measles? Get Tested!

by Statcare Urgent Medical Care

The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) announced this past week that a tourist, who had been confirmed to have measles, visited Niagara Falls on May 11 and May 12, 2017 and may have potentially exposed others to measles.

Measles can be serious. The common presenting symptoms are fever, rash, runny nose and red eyes. It can cause serious health complications.

Complications:

  • ear infection (otitis media)
  • lung infection (penumonia, bronchitis)
  • diarrhea
  • brain swelling/damage

According to the CDC:

  • about 1 in 4 people in the U.S. who get measles will be hospitalized.
  • 1 out of every 1,000 people with measles will develop brain swelling/damage.
  • 1 or 2 out of 1,000 people with measles will die, even with the best care.

People at high risk of complications:

  • infants and children < 5 years of age
  • adults aged > 20 years of age
  • pregnant women
  • people with compromised immune systems like leukemia, HIV

Measles spreads through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It is so contagious that if one person has it, 9 out of 10 people around him or her will also become infected if they are not protected.

Measles was declared eliminated from the U.S. in 2000 thanks to a highly effective vaccination program. It is no longer constantly present in this country. However, measles is still common in many parts of the world. Even if your family does not travel internationally, you could come into contact with measles anywhere in the community.

The best protection against measles is measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine. MMR vaccine provides long-lasting protection against all strains of measles. 2 doses of the vaccine are recommended for best protection.

Walk-in to any of our clinics to get tested for immunity against measles (blood-work) . We also offer the MMR vaccine. No appointment is necessary at our clinics and you’ll only wait minutes to be seen. You can call ahead at (855) 9 FOR DOC and let us know you’re on the way or you can check in online.