Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Potential Measles Outbreak Scare

An interesting virus scare is affecting some 250 people that were aboard a Hawaiian airlines flight over the weekend. Apparently a 10 month old child on the flight from San Diego to Hawaii (I assume Honolulu, the article doesn't specify the arrival city) developed symptoms of measles aa dy after the flight, indicating that she was likely infectious during the flight itself. Apparently the child contracted the disease at a pediatrician's office 2 weeks earlier. She was not immune because the MMRV vaccine is usually given at 12 mos. So this is interesting in that it demonstrates the potentially dramatic consequences of pre-symptommatic infectivity and its potential to create a high transmission rate, particularly with a disease like measles that is ultra-infectious. Furthermore, it demonstrates how modern transportation can lead to the spread of a disease to far reaches of the Earth very quickly.


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