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, also called rubeola, can be serious. It can be prevented by the MMR vaccine. The common presenting symptoms of Measles or Rubeola are fever, rash, runny nose and red eyes. It can cause serious health complications.
Complications of Measles
- ear infection (otitis media)
- lung infection (pneumonia, bronchitis)
- brain swelling/damage
According to the CDC:
- about 1 in 4 people in the U.S. who get measles will need to stay overnight in the hospital.
- 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 weak 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 get it if they are not protected.
Rubeola was gone from the U.S. in 2000 thanks to a highly effective vaccination program. Consequently, it is no longer constantly present in this country. However, this disease 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 rubeola or measles is the MMR vaccine. MMR vaccine provides long-lasting protection against all strains of measles. Doctors recommend two doses of the vaccine for the best protection. Therefore, when in doubt, Statcare can check your MMR titers to make sure you have protection against Measles, Mumps and Rubella. MMR titers for antibody levels are really important in pregnant women and healthcare workers.
Walk-in to any of our clinics to check your immunity to rubeola (blood-work). We also offer the MMR vaccine at a very reasonable cost. Check out our prices for MMR Vaccine. No appointment is necessary at our clinics and you’ll only wait minutes to see the doctor. You can call ahead at (917) 310-3371 and let us know you’re on the way or you can check in online.