Nine cases of mumps in Manitoba

Dorine Nepinak at her retirement tea.
Mumps is an infectious disease caused by the mumps virus. It is best known for the swollen, painful cheeks and neck that it may cause.
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More about mumps

Winnipeg Regional Health Authority
Published Thursday, October 20, 2016

Provincial public health officials confirmed today that nine cases of mumps have been reported in Manitoba since Sept. 1.
The majority of affected individuals are students at the University of Manitoba, live in Winnipeg and were not hospitalized. Manitoba typically experiences four to five cases of mumps every year. 

Winnipeg Regional Health Authority public health officials are investigating each of these cases and identifying contacts. Where appropriate, people will be offered immunization. Individuals with mumps will be asked to restrict their contact with others to reduce the possible spread of mumps. Public health officials will continue to monitor the situation in Manitoba and will provide updated information as necessary.

Although there can be rare complications from mumps, the vast majority of cases are mild, with full recovery in one to two weeks. Key symptoms include swelling and pain in one or more salivary glands, usually on both sides of the face, and fever.

The mumps virus can be passed on to others when an infected person passes fluids from the mouth and nose to another by sharing drinks, food or cigarettes; by kissing; by coughing or sneezing within a metre of another person.

The mumps virus can be spread to others from two to three days before and four to five days after symptoms appear. Some people infected with mumps may not have any symptoms at all, but can still spread the virus to other people.

In Manitoba, a two-dose measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine program was introduced in 1996. Protection against mumps is offered free-of-charge as part of Manitoba’s routine immunization schedule at 12 months of age and again at four to six years of age. Health-care workers and students may also be eligible. Manitobans should contact their health-care provider to determine if they require this vaccine.

People who think they might have mumps, or have been in close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with mumps, should phone their health-care provider or phone Health Links–Info Santé at 204-788-8200 or 1-888-315-9257 (toll-free) for more information.

If visiting a physician or health-care provider, it is best to call ahead and make an appointment so health-care staff can take steps to reduce the exposure of other people to the virus.

To reduce the spread of mumps, people should:

  • wash their hands often with soap and water or use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available,
  • avoid sharing drinking glasses or eating utensils,
  • cover coughs and sneezes with the forearm or a tissue,
  • stay home when sick.

SOURCE: Province of Manitoba

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