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ational Epidemiology Center Head Dr. Eric Tayag has announced that there is currently an outbreak of measles in Manila and the Department of Health (DOH) forecasts that it could peak well into the summer months.

Affected cities so far include Manila, Caloocan, Las Piñas, Muntinlupa and Parañaque.

The DOH is encouraging vaccinations, which is free in health centers nationwide, and has stated that for mothers or relatives who are unable to bring children to local health centers, the "DOH personnel would come personally to the houses to administer the measles vaccine." Contact your nearest health center for details.

Please consult your doctor should you have any concerns.

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Measles is a very contagious illness that mostly affects children, although adults can also get it.

The disease is also called rubeola (not to be mistaken for rubella).

It is caused by a type of virus. Measles virus normally grows in the cells that line the back of the throat and lungs.

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Symptoms will begin to show 10 to 14 days after infection.

Initially, they include fever, weakness, loss of appetite and sticky or itchy eyes.

Runny nose, loss of voice, hacking cough, diarrhea and finding bright light unpleasant is also possible.

Tiny white/blue spots will appear on the inside of the mouth. They may have a fine red circle around them.

Following this, a blotchy red rash appears on the skin. The rash usually starts behind the ears, and then spreads to the face, the body and then to the arms and legs.

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The measles virus can be found in the body fluids of an infected person's mouth and nose; and can travel through air.

It is spread from person to person through coughing, sneezing, and sharing food and drinks.

Persons, children and adults alike, who are not immune and are exposed to it will most likely get the disease.

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As measles is caused by a virus, treatment with antibiotics will be of no use.

However, doctors may prescribe antibiotics if the patient develops a bacterial infection (such as pneumonia or an ear infection) as a result of having measles.

Bed rest is recommended.

Offer your child plenty of clear drinks throughout the day, especially if they have a fever. Consult with your doctor if there is a need for medications to treat the fever.

Don’t worry if your child does not feel like eating as this is normal; however, it is very important to keep them drinking.

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In some children (or adults) measles can cause very serious illnesses, such as pneumonia (infection of the lungs) or encephalitis (inflammation of the brain).

Measles can also make a pregnant woman have a miscarriage or give birth prematurely.

Take your child to a hospital if they:

  • are having trouble breathing

  • are complaining of a stiff neck

  • are complaining of a severe headache

  • develop bruises

  • are very drowsy or you cannot wake them up

  • are coughing up green or yellow thick sputum or are complaining of pain in their back

  • are complaining that they have sore ears

  • have a seizure or convulsions (when the body shakes rapidly and uncontrollably, or prolonged staring)

  • have not urinated for 10 hours


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Other rash-causing diseases often confused with measles include roseola (roseola infantum) and rubella (German measles).

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The measles vaccine is usually part of the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine that can be given to children. Adults who have never received the vaccine should consult their doctors.

During outbreaks, children may also be offered a ‘booster’ dose upon consultation with a doctor.

Pregnant women should not get the MMR vaccine.

Children who have contracted measles may be contagious from 3-5 days before the rash appears to as many as 4 days after the rash begins. They must be kept away from other children during this time.

 

 

Please consult your doctor should you have any concerns.

 

Information in this article lifted from:

http://www.mydr.com.au/kids-teens-health/measles-what-you-need-to-know

http://www.cdc.gov/measles/about/overview.html

http://www.healthychildren.org/english/safety-prevention/immunizations/pages/Measles-Mumps-Rubella-Vaccines-What-You-Need-to-Know.aspx

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Robin Reyes

Robin Reyes believes that jazz hands and spirit fingers are the keys to success in life.

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