Mumps cases on rise, warning issued

Following the number of mumps cases in Cheshire soaring a warning has been issued to teenagers. In 2008, there were 586 reported cases of mumps across Cheshire and Merseyside, with 111 confirmed by laboratory tests but this year the numbers have gone up to 1,200 cases, with 304 confirmed.

Mumps is a virus which spreads through saliva leading to infection in other parts of the body such as the parotid salivary glands. Apart from serious problems such as deafness, pregnancy loss, swelling in some other areas of the body, including the brain, mumps may cause fever, muscle aches, tiredness, loss of appetite, and headaches. Mumps can also attack the central nervous system.

Prof Qutub Syed, director of HPA North West, said, "We have seen a sharp rise in the figures this year and teenagers and young adults who have not had two doses of MMR vaccine are particularly vulnerable.

Measles-mumps-rubella vaccine (MMR) is a way for keeping mumps at bay. Doctors have advised to take medical help if the above symptoms exist.
(With Inputs from Anjali Singh)