Texas Measles Outbreak Prompts Concerns in Oklahoma
Health officials in Oklahoma are concerned about measles following a recent outbreak in Texas.
"We are worried about the current outbreak of measles in Texas, because measles is very contagious, spreads like wildfire and can be very serious," said Lori Linstead, director of the Immunization Service at the Oklahoma State Department of Health.
The age range of the cases in Texas ranges from four months to 44 years old. Health officials said anyone who has not been properly vaccinated is susceptible.
The last reported case of measles in Oklahoma was back in 1997. There are no cases reported in the state currently.
Below, symptoms of measles from the Oklahoma Health Dept.
Symptoms of measles include a high fever and a red blotchy rash starting on the face then spreading to the rest of the body. Symptoms begin to appear about 10 to 12 days after exposure to the virus. Individuals first experience a fever lasting about two to four days then followed by the onset of cough, runny nose, and/or conjunctivitis. The rash usually appears about 14 days after exposure and lasts four to seven days. It begins at the hairline, and then involves the face and upper neck. Over the next three days, the rash gradually proceeds downward and outward, reaching the hands and feet. Symptoms may last for one to two weeks. There is no treatment for measles; however, health care providers may treat the symptoms of measles with bed rest, plenty of fluids, and anti-fever medications.
Measles is spread from person-to-person by airborne droplets, commonly from a contagious person coughing or sneezing; by direct contact with nasal or throat secretions of infected persons; or through touching surfaces contaminated with these secretions. Infected people can spread the disease usually four days before their rash starts to four days after rash onset.
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