According to the most recent reports, in 2017, the state of Texas recorded the highest number of mumps cases in over two decades. Public health authorities released an announcement on the matter earlier this week. In it, they pointed out the fact that there have been multiple such outbreaks spread across the state. Some of these cases may potentially be linked to the recent spring break travel. Others may be connected to South Padre Island.
The Number Of Mumps Cases Exceeded Any Expectations
The Texas Stated Department of State Health Services or DSHS revealed, on April 12th, that, so far into 2017, there have been 221 registered mumps cases. This is the highest number reported over the last two decades. This value is comparable only to 1994 when there were 234 reported such cases.
Based on the high number of cases, the DSHS also went to release an advisory. This targets health care providers and advises them to stay on high alert. They should keep watch for patients carrying this highly contagious virus. Also, the DSHS is advising state residents to get vaccinated.
Reportedly, some of the mumps cases may be linked to the South Padre Island ones. Health authorities from another state contacted Texan authorities on the matter and found a possible connection. They started from a single mumps patient who traveled to the region. Further research revealed another 13 cases of traveling mumps people.
However, at least for the moment, health authorities are unsure as to what caused this rise in the number of mumps cases. The CDC or Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention pointed towards crowded environments as a possible cause.
Nonetheless, an exact cause of the current outbreaks has yet to be determined. Dr. Peter Hotez stated that:
“It will require some good epidemiological studies to figure out why we’re seeing this big uptick in mumps.”
Dr. Hotez is the president of the Sabin Vaccine Institute and the Dean of the Texas Children’s Hospital.
Image Source: Wikimedia
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