measles vaccine

US Measles Count Rises To 764, Driven By New York Outbreaks

May 06, 2019 - 3:01 pm
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(WWJ/AP) U.S. health officials say at least 60 more measles cases have been reported, increasing a 2019 tally that is already the highest in 25 years.

Officials on Monday said 764 cases have been reported as of last Thursday. It's the most in the U.S. since 1994, when 963 were reported.

New York has had the most illnesses this year, by far. Last week's cases included 41 in New York City and 11 in nearby Rockland County. Most were unvaccinated people in Orthodox Jewish communities.

Measles was once common but gradually became rare after a vaccination campaigns that started in the 1960s. In all, 23 states have reported cases this year, with Pennsylvania recently added to the list. 

In Michigan, the number of confirned cases remains at 43 after officials say a scare at Detroit Metro Airport over the weekend turned out to be a false alarm. 

While the Wayne County Airport Authority said Saturday there was concern about a sick passenger on a flight from Las Vegas to DTW in Romulus, the CDC said the child was taken to a hospital where doctors concluded he did not have the measles. There were two confirmed measles cases with exposures at Metro Airport back in October, but none since that time. 

Measles is spread by person-to-person contact and through the air, the CDC says, is extremely contagious and can be deadly to some if not properly treated. 

Symptoms usually begin 7-14 days after exposure, but can appear up to 21 days after exposure and may include:

  • High fever (may spike to over 104˚F).
  • Cough.
  • Runny nose.
  • Red, watery eyes (conjunctivitis).
  • Tiny white spots on the inner cheeks, gums, and roof of the mouth (Koplik Spots) 2-3 days after symptoms begin.
  • A rash that is red, raised, blotchy; usually starts on face, spreads to trunk, arms, and legs 3-5 days after symptoms begin.

Doctors stress that the best way to protect yourself and your family from this serious illness is to make sure everyone is vaccinated. 

Find more information on measles from the CDC at this link. For updated on the Michigan outbreak, visit Michigan.gov/MeaslesOutbreak