Washington Measles Outbreak Spreads

Transmission electron micrograph of a single measles virus particleWIKIMEDIA CDC  CYNTHIA S. GOLDSMITH WILLIAM BELLINI

Transmission electron micrograph of a single measles virus particleWIKIMEDIA CDC CYNTHIA S. GOLDSMITH WILLIAM BELLINI

At least 10 USA states have reported cases of measles so far in 2019, including Washington, where an outbreak is to blame for 50 cases.

News 3 medical expert Dr. Ryan Light said the decline in vaccinations could lead to even more measles cases across the country.

Children who are deficient in vitamin A are at higher risk for severe complications from measles if they get the disease, but most children in the USA receive sufficient amounts in their diet. They're also confirming that one of the known cases involves a person who had one dose of the MMR vaccine, but not the second.

"The measles vaccine isn't ideal, but one dose is 93 percent effective at preventing illness", Melnick said. Two doses are about 97% effective. Despite measles being declared eradicated in the United States in 2000, there have been periodic outbreaks. Washington's exemption rate, although lower, is also high when compared with other states.

She said there have been two cases of measles in 29 years in Auburn and both were not vaccinated.

The Oregon Legislature needs to act. Sen. The Legislature now requires parents to either watch an educational video or talk to a doctor before claiming the exemption. Another anti-vaccination group, Informed Choice Washington, had its members at the statehouse on Thursday trying to dissuade lawmakers.

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She said because people don't see the disease, some individuals are more scared of the vaccine than the virus. The largest recent outbreak in California was in 2015 - which was linked to Disneyland.

Obviously, some people really shouldn't be immunized: Anyone who ever has had a life-threatening allergic reaction to the antibiotic neomycin, or anyone who's pregnant, or if you're ill when you're scheduled to get your shots. Most children in the USA are vaccinated, with 91% of 19-to-35 month-olds having at least one dose and about 94% of those entering kindergarten having two doses. Parents who don't want to immunize their children can homeschool or enroll their children in independent study at the local public school.

Measles can be spread through direct contact and as an airborne virus. "Complications include pneumonia, brain swelling and possible brain damage, and death". High fever, rash all over the body, stuffy nose and reddened eyes are typical measles symptoms, though these usually disappear without treatment within two or three weeks.

The age of the measles victims has also trended upward, but the bulk are still 1 to 10 years old. Patients are contagious four days before and four days after getting the rash. At least 34 people affected are children between 1 and 10.

"If someone in the room has it and sneezes, and it goes around the room, pretty much anyone in that room will pick up that virus and may get sick from it if they're susceptible to it".

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