More mumps cases on campus: What you need to know

The number of mumps cases identified in UW-Madison students has increased to five. UHS is working with public health officials to monitor the situation.

Mumps is a contagious viral illness that spreads by droplets of saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose, or throat of an infected person, usually when the person coughs, sneezes or talks. While most people who have been given the mumps vaccine are usually protected for life against mumps infections, mumps can occur in previously immunized persons.

For common questions and answers about mumps, check out “What college students need to know about mumps.

UHS is encouraging all students to take the following steps to stay healthy and prevent spreading the illness.

  1. Check your immunization records. First things first, check your immunization records to make sure you’ve had two doses of the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine.
    If not, students can get vaccinated at no cost at UHS. Call 608-265-5600 or use MyUHS to make an appointment. Faculty and staff should visit their private health care provider or pharmacy.
  2.  

  3. Take a page from the flu playbook with preventive actions. Wash your hands regularly with soap and water; sneeze and cough into a tissue or your elbow; and avoid sharing drinks, food and utensils.
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  5. Watch for symptoms even if you have been vaccinated. Contact UHS if you experience them. Early symptoms usually begin 16 to 18 days after infection and are similar to those of the flu: fever, headache, muscle aches, and fatigue. Swelling of the cheek and jaw area (salivary glands) usually follows and is a classic symptom of mumps. Students who experience symptoms should call UHS at 608-265-5600 or use MyUHS to make an appointment. Faculty and staff should contact their private health care provider.
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  7. Stay home if you are sick. Anyone suspected of having mumps is expected to stay home from school, work, or similar activities for five days. This means don’t attend class or labs, go to work, or socialize with others during this five-day period and don’t use public transportation. Mouth and nose should be covered during any sneezing or coughing and hands should be washed frequently. There is no treatment for mumps, but you can soothe your symptoms by getting plenty of bed rest, taking over-the-counter pain killers such as Ibuprofen or Tylenol to relieve any pain, and drinking plenty of fluids.

Three simple steps to avoid catching campus sicknesses

We know Badgers are overachievers but this takes it to a whole new level.  This week, we’ve seen three different illnesses in students: mumps, pneumonia and conjunctivitis.

We covered mumps and pneumonia in previous blogs. Info on mumps can be found here and info on pneumonia can be found here.   Conjunctivitis is what’s commonly known as pink eye. It’s commonly caused by a bacterial or viral infection or an allergic reaction.  Your eyes become red, your tear ducts can get fill with discharge and itchiness can occur.

You can reduce your chances of catching any of these illnesses with three simple tips:

  1. Wash your hands regularly with soap and water.
  2. Sneeze and cough into a tissue or your elbow.
  3. Avoid sharing drinks, food and utensils.

If your eye looks like this, call UHS for an appointment. (Credit: Google images)

In general, treatment for all three involves lots of rest and Tylenol or ibuprofen for fever.  Mumps, viral pneumonia and viral conjunctivitis will usually clear up on its own.   Antibiotics will be prescribed to those with bacterial pneumonia or bacterial conjunctivitis.

Students should make an appointment at UHS if any of the following applies:

  • If you have a fever that’s over 100, feel short of breath, or have chest pain
  • If you have eye discharge that extends across the entire eye
  • If you experience mumps symptoms 

Jog for a cause at 2014 Poker Run

UHSWebSliderPokerRun2014Pull those running shoes out of your closet, shake off any lingering winter blues and take part in the Poker Run on April 17 at 6 p.m.

Sponsored by the UW-Madison Kinesiology Club, the 5K run/walk’s route will wind through the Lakeshore Path. Registration prior to the day of the race costs $14, while day-of registration costs $15 and begins at 4:30 p.m. The proceeds from the race will benefit Tri4Schools and the Kinesiology Club.

Before beginning the event, racers will draw three poker cards. They will then draw two more cards upon finishing. Those with the top poker hands will be recognized. In addition, all runners will receive a free Poker Run t-shirt and will be entered to win prizes. Complimentary snacks and refreshments will be provided post-race.

To sign up or to learn more about the run, visit https://runsignup.com/Race/WI/Madison/UWKinesiologyClubPokerRun.

Take Five: What you need to know about mumps

UHS has confirmed that three UW-Madison students have recently been diagnosed with mumps. The cases don’t appear to be connected and UHS is working with public health officials to monitor the situation. More info »

1. The lowdown on mumps. Mumps is a contagious viral illness that spreads by droplets of saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose, or throat of an infected person, usually when the person coughs, sneezes or talks. Items used by an infected person, such as cups or soft drink cans, or surfaces they touch can also be contaminated with the virus. Anyone who is not immune from either previous mumps infection or from vaccination can get mumps.

Most healthy people will recover within 10 days. Serious complications such as deafness, while rare, can occur.

Vaccination

2. You can prevent getting and spreading mumps. First things first, check your immunization records to make sure you’ve had two doses of the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine. If not, students can get vaccinated at no cost at UHS. Call 608-265-5600 or use MyUHS to make an appointment. Faculty and staff should visit their private health care provider or pharmacy.

3. Take a page from the flu playbook with preventive actions. Wash your hands regularly with soap and water; sneeze and cough into a tissue or your elbow; and avoid sharing drinks, food and utensils.

4. Watch for symptoms. Early symptoms usually begin 16 to 18 days after infection and are similar to those of the flu: fever, headache, muscle aches, and fatigue. Swelling of the cheek and jaw area (salivary glands) usually follows and is a classic symptom of mumps.

Students who experience symptoms should call UHS at 608-265-5600 or use MyUHS to make an appointment. Faculty and staff should contact their private health care provider.

5. If you have been diagnosed with mumps: There is no specific treatment available for mumps. Those who are diagnosed should stay home from school, work, or similar activities for five days after symptoms begin and stay away from others. Mouth and nose should be covered during any sneezing or coughing and hands should be washed frequently. Pain, discomfort and fever can be treated with ibuprofen or Tylenol. Drink plenty of fluids and eat when you’re able.

More information:
- What College Students Need to Know About Mumps
- Mumps are back-take preventive steps
- Mumps (CDC)