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Mumps Outbreak - UC Berkeley

NEWS UPDATE:

11/2/11

The number of new cases of UC Berkeley students diagnosed with mumps has fallen significantly in the past few weeks and we have vaccinated almost 4,000 members of the campus community.  As a result of the decrease in the number of cases, state and local public health officials are now advising UHS that we may discontinue our mass mumps immunization clinics. 

UHS will continue to test students who have mumps-like symptoms and work closely with the state and local public health departments to identify new cases.  Recommendations from state and local public health officials are subject to change if there is an increase in mumps cases during the subsequent weeks. If you are a UC Berkeley student or UHS HNET patient, and have questions about mumps, please contact the UHS clinic nurse at 643-7197.

We will continue to hold our previously planned flu vaccine clinics on November 1, 8, and 16, as well as December 1, from noon- 6pm. We encourage members of the campus to get vaccinated against influenza. These clinic dates will be for influenza (flu) vaccine only. Click here for more details about the Flu clinics.

Please check this webpage for updates, and follow our Facebook and Twitter sites.

 

 


 

 

 

 

PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONS PRIOR TO 11/2/11

The UC Berkeley campus community is experiencing an outbreak of mumps. University Health Services and the City of Berkeley’s Public Health Division are working closely with the California Department of Public Health to limit spread of the disease.

Mumps is a contagious viral infection that is spread by droplets of saliva or mucus, coming from the mouth, nose, or throat of an infected person. Most common symptoms develop 16-18 days after exposure to the virus (range 14-25 days). Treatment for mumps consists of getting plenty of rest and consuming fluids.  Antibiotics are not useful.


To protect your health we urge you to do the following:

  • Review your vaccination records.

    Most people born before 1957 have had mumps disease and are immune to mumps and most people who have had two doses of MMR vaccine will also be protected against mumps.  However, 5-10% may still be susceptible to mumps after receiving the two recommended doses. There is evidence that in outbreak settings an additional dose of MMR may decrease transmission of mumps. 

    As information about the outbreak emerges, recommendations are being refined to maximize the impact of immunization measures.  UC Berkeley students living in congregate settings (high density housing with shared eating areas and bathroom facilities such as campus residence halls, fraternity/sorority housing, and cooperative housing) are now considered the highest priority for receiving MMR and are strongly encouraged to receive an additional dose of MMR, regardless of their vaccination status. Any other members of the UC community who have received fewer than two doses of MMR vaccine, or have never had mumps, and want to reduce their risk of mumps should receive an additional dose of MMR. Any other members of the UC community who have received two doses of vaccine and/or have had mumps and want to reduce their risk of mumps may receive an additional dose of MMR.

    Note:  MMR vaccine is not appropriate for pregnant women or for individuals with weakened immune systems.
    • Check back for updates on the next MMR vaccination availability.
  • Be alert for symptoms of mumps over the next 3-4 weeks: fever, headache, muscle aches, fatigue and loss of appetite, swollen or tender salivary glands under the ears, jaw or under the tongue, on one or both sides of the face.
    • Stay home if you develop symptoms. Do not attend classes or work for five (5) days after the onset of symptoms to help limit the spread of the disease to others. 
    • Contact your healthcare provider.  If you are a UCB student or established patient at Tang, please call our nurse advice line at 510-643-7197.
  • Wash your hands frequently or use a hand sanitizer. Cover your cough to reduce the spread of disease. Do not share eating utensils, drinking glasses, water bottles, etc. Avoid close contact with those that are ill.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is mumps?
Q: What are the symptoms of mumps?
Q: How can I prevent mumps?
Q: What should I do if I have symptoms?
Q: Is mumps a serious disease?
Q: What action is the campus taking in response to this outbreak?
Q: What things should I do during a mumps outbreak?
Q: Why is there a recommendation for a 3rd dose of MMR vaccine? I can't find this recommendation anywhere else.
Q: What if I had mumps before or if I was born before 1957?
Q: I missed the first MMR vaccine clinics. Are you holding more clinics?
Q: I've been told that I need to stay away from people while I'm sick with mumps; what does that mean and why does it matter?
Q: Why do mumps outbreaks happen?
Q: I got the vaccine but still got mumps. Does this mean the vaccine doesn’t work?

Q: What is mumps?
A. Mumps is a viral infection that is spread by droplets of saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose or throat of an infected person and can spread easily in settings where people have close contact with each other, such as college dormitories. Symptoms typically develop 2-3 weeks after exposure to the virus. See the CDC website for more information.

 

Q: What are the symptoms of mumps?
A: The most common symptoms are fever, headache, and swollen or tender salivary glands under the ears, jaw or tongue.  In males, the disease can also cause painful, swollen testicles.  The disease can also lead to hearing loss, aseptic meningitis (infection of the covering of the brain and spinal cord). 

 

Q: How can I prevent mumps?
A: Most people born before 1957 have had mumps disease and are immune to mumps and most people who have had two doses of MMR vaccine will also be protected against mumps.  However, 5-10% may still be susceptible to mumps after receiving the two recommended doses. There is evidence that in outbreak settings an additional dose of MMR may decrease transmission of mumps. 

As information about the outbreak emerges, recommendations are being refined to maximize the impact of immunization measures.  UC Berkeley students living in congregate settings such as campus residence halls are now considered the highest priority for receiving MMR and are strongly encouraged to receive an additional dose of MMR, regardless of their vaccination status. Any other members of the UC community who have received fewer than two doses of MMR vaccine, or have never had mumps, and want to reduce their risk of mumps should receive an additional dose of MMR. Any other members of the UC community who have received two doses of vaccine and/or have had mumps and want to reduce their risk of mumps may receive an additional dose of MMR. (Note: MMR vaccine is not appropriate for pregnant women or for individuals with weakened immune systems.)

MMR vaccine is not appropriate for pregnant women or for individuals with weakened immune systems.

 

Q: What should I do if I have symptoms?

A:

  • Stay home and do not attend classes or work and limit your contact with others as much as you can for 5 days after the onset of symptoms to help prevent the spread of the disease.
  • Contact Tang Health Center Advice Nurse at (510)643-7197 to determine if testing is indicated.
  • Cover your mouth and nose when you cough and clean your hands frequently with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.

 

 

Q: Is mumps a serious disease?
A: (CDC) Most people with mumps fully recover after a few weeks. While infected with mumps, many people feel tired and achy, have a fever, and may have swelling of the salivary glands on the side of the face. Others may feel extremely ill and be unable to eat because of pain around the jaw, and a few will develop serious complications. Men and adolescent boys can develop pain or swelling in their testicles, and in some cases this can result in impaired fertility. In very rare cases, sterility can result.  Another rare complication involves inflammation of the protective membranes (meninges) covering the brain and spinal cord.  This can cause severe headache, meningitis, and in some cases partial or temporary loss of hearing.  In rare cases, this hearing loss can be permanent. One of the more serious but rare complications of mumps is inflammation of the brain (encephalitis), which can lead to death or permanent disability.  Other organ systems can also be affected.

 

Q: What action is the campus taking in response to this outbreak?
A. University Health Services and the City of Berkeley’s Public Health Division are working closely with the California Department of Public Health to limit spread of the disease.

  • Surveillance – testing on patients with classic signs and symptoms of mumps to aid the California State Department of Public Health in tracking the spread of disease.
  • Isolation of suspected or confirmed cases of mumps to limit spread of the disease to others when patients are most contagious
  • Education to the campus community on information about the mumps outbreak and important measures everyone can take to help slow or stop the spread of the outbreak.  These include basic hand-washing, coughing in your sleeve, avoidance of shared utensils, cups, etc., staying away from crowded conditions that position you very close to others, etc.
  • Vaccination – Repeat MMR vaccination for students who live in congregate housing settings (dorms, fraternities, sororities, co-op housing with shared dining facilities,etc).

 

 

Q: What things should I do during a mumps outbreak?
A:
1) Review your vaccination records. Most people born before 1957 have had mumps disease and are immune to mumps and most people who have had two doses of MMR vaccine will also be protected against mumps.  However, 5-10% may still be susceptible to mumps after receiving the two recommended doses. There is evidence that in outbreak settings an additional dose of MMR may decrease transmission of mumps. 

As information about the outbreak emerges, recommendations are being refined to maximize the impact of immunization measures.  UC Berkeley students living in congregate settings such as campus residence halls are now considered the highest priority for receiving MMR and are strongly encouraged to receive an additional dose of MMR, regardless of their vaccination status.  Any other members of the UC community who have received two or fewer doses of vaccine and want to reduce their risk of mumps should receive an additional dose of MMR.

MMR vaccine is not appropriate for pregnant women or for individuals with weakened immune systems

2) Wash your hands frequently, and cover your cough to reduce the spread of disease. Do not share eating utensils, drinking glasses, water bottles, etc.

3) If you do get ill with mumps, stay home, and avoid close contact with people until at least 5 days after your glands began to swell. Avoid close contact with those that are ill.

 

Q: Why is there a recommendation for a 3rd dose of MMR vaccine? I can't find this recommendation anywhere else.
A. There is evidence that in outbreak settings an additional dose of MMR may decrease transmission of mumps. Most people born before 1957 have had mumps disease and are immune to mumps and most people who have had two doses of MMR vaccine will also be protected against mumps.  However, 5-10% may still be susceptible to mumps after receiving the two recommended doses.

As information about the outbreak emerges, recommendations are being refined to maximize the impact of immunization measures.  UC Berkeley students living in congregate settings such as campus residence halls are now considered the highest priority for receiving MMR and are strongly encouraged to receive an additional dose of MMR, regardless of their vaccination status. Any other members of the UC community who have received fewer than two doses of MMR vaccine, or have never had mumps, and want to reduce their risk of mumps should receive an additional dose of MMR. Any other members of the UC community who have received two doses of vaccine and/or have had mumps and want to reduce their risk of mumps may receive an additional dose of MMR. (Note: MMR vaccine is not appropriate for pregnant women or for individuals with weakened immune systems.)

Note:  MMR vaccine is not appropriate for pregnant women or for individuals with weakened immune systems.

 

Q: What if I had mumps before or if I was born before 1957?
A. Most people born before 1957 have had mumps disease and are immune to mumps and most people who have had two doses of MMR vaccine will also be protected against mumps.  However, 5-10% may still be susceptible to mumps after receiving the two recommended doses.

 

Q: I missed the first MMR vaccine clinics. Are you holding more clinics?
A: The next scheduled FLU/MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) Vaccination Clinic is Friday, October 28, from 12-6pm at University Health Services. We have modified our procedures to speed up the lines, which has significantly decreased wait times for our vaccine clinics. No appointment needed, just drop in. Flu vaccine available to all adults; free for students with UC SHIP, $25 everyone else. MMR vaccine is free and only available to UC Berkeley students, faculty and staff (please bring your campus photo ID-Cal 1 Card). Additional clinics will be scheduled as needed. Please check this webpage frequently for details on newly opened vaccination dates (see current clinics here).

 

Q: I've been told that I need to stay away from people while I'm sick with mumps; what does that mean and why does it matter?
A: (CDC) When you have mumps, you should avoid close and prolonged contact with other people until at least 5 days after your glands began to swell, because you are most contagious to others during this time period. This means you should stay home when you are sick with mumps. You should not go to work or school. Even at home, you should limit contact with the people you live with.  For example, sleep in a separate room by yourself if you can. Wear a mask when others are in your vicinity.  Staying home while sick with mumps is an important way to avoid spreading the virus to other people.

 

Q: Why do mumps outbreaks happen?
A: (CDC) Although the vaccine against mumps is very effective, it is not perfect. When the mumps virus is introduced into settings where close contact between people makes it easy for the virus to spread (such as schools and colleges) outbreaks sometimes occur. People who are not vaccinated against mumps have a higher chance of getting the disease and spreading the virus to others.

 

Q: I got the vaccine but still got mumps. Does this mean the vaccine doesn’t work?
A: (CDC) The MMR vaccine is very effective against measles, mumps, and rubella, but it is not perfect. MMR vaccine reduces the risk of getting mumps, especially if you get two doses. People who have received two doses of the MMR vaccine are about 9 times less likely to get mumps than unvaccinated people who have the same exposure to mumps virus. However, some people who received two doses of MMR can still get mumps, especially if they have an intense exposure to the mumps virus. If they do get mumps, people who have been vaccinated are likely to have less severe illness.

Before there was a vaccine against mumps, mumps was a common childhood disease in the United States, and in some cases, the disease caused complications, such as permanent deafness in children and, occasionally, swelling of the brain (encephalitis), which can result in death, although very rarely. Now, there are normally only a few hundred cases of mumps every year. However, outbreaks occur sometimes and involve a higher number of cases. In 2006, there was an outbreak affecting more than 6,000 people in the United States, with many cases occurring on college campuses. In 2009, an outbreak started in a close-knit religious communities and schools in the Northeast, resulting in more than 2,500 cases. These outbreaks have shown that when people who are sick with mumps have close contact with a lot of other people (such as among students living in dormitories and students and families in close-knit communities) mumps can spread even among vaccinated people.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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