Getting vaccinated can help stop measles from spreading
The possible case of measles Mount Nittany Health reported Thursday to the state Department of Health tested negative for the virus, a DOH spokesman confirmed.
The possible case was reported Thursday by Mount Nittany Physician Group Pediatrics in Boalsburg “out of an abundance of caution,” Mount Nittany spokesperson Anissa Ilie said.
Although the office remained open and business continued as usual, Ilie said, patients were called and given the option to reschedule.
With 555 confirmed individual cases in 20 states from the start of this year until April 11, the U.S. is seeing its second-biggest outbreak of the viral infection since it was largely eliminated in 2000, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Although there has yet to be a confirmed case in Pennsylvania, neighboring states New York and New Jersey are both experiencing outbreaks.
As of Friday, there have been 226 confirmed cases in New York state in addition to 359 cases in New York City as of Thursday, and 13 reported cases in New Jersey, as of April 5, according to those departments of health.
Measles is a “highly contagious” virus that lives in the nose and throat mucus of an infected person, according to the CDC. It can spread to others through coughing and sneezing, and can live for up to two hours in an airspace where an infected person coughed or sneezed.
Symptoms, which generally appear about one to two weeks after a person is infected, begin with a high fever, cough, runny nose and red, watery eyes, according to the CDC. Tiny white spots may appear inside the mouth two or three days after symptoms begin, and a full-body rash three to five days later.
Measles can be prevented with the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, the CDC says. The CDC typically recommends children receive two doses of the vaccine, one from age 12-15 months, and another from 4 to 6 years old.