Monday, November 5, 2007

Mumps in Canada

Nova Scotia mumps outbreak hits 715 cases!

There are 9 new cases of mumps in Nova Scotia this week, bringing the total number to 715 since the outbreak began last winter, according to he Department of Health Promotion and Protection on Friday Nov 2nd. Dr Shelly Sarwal, the province's medical officer of health, said last week that between 10 and 20 new cases have been reported each week since the outbreak started in February, with a jump since students went back to class.

Since schools reopened in September there have been 129 new cases in the province. The increase was not unexpected because a second round of vaccinations has yet to fully kick in, Dr Sarwal said. In July, the province announced Nova Scotia's post-secondary and Grade 12 students would be offered a second dose of mumps, measles and rubella vaccine.

The mumps can be spread through coughing, sneezing and exchanging of saliva through kissing or sharing drinks. Symptoms include aches, pains, fever and loss of appetite. In extreme cases, mumps can lead to meningitis, inflammation of the testicles or ovaries, hearing loss and, according to the Canadian Medical Association Journal, reduced male fertility.

Source: The Chronicle Herald Nova Scotia, November 3, 2007


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