On Friday, February 14, news broke of a possible measles outbreak in Northern California. According to CNN, the University of California, Berkeley, campus was the site of the issue.1 Reports indicate that a student at the school, who most likely contracted the virus while overseas, may have put others at risk while commuting to and from class.
However, a number of Americans are safe from contracting the disease, as most are vaccinated for life during childhood. The source explains that children are most susceptible to the condition, especially those who have not been vaccinated. For every 1,000 children who contract measles, one or two will die.
Signs and symptoms
Since the measles are rare among U.S. citizens, many are unaware of the signs associated with the potentially deadly disease. In many cases, indications of the virus will pop up within seven to 14 days following contraction, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report.2 Symptoms may include flu-like health issues, such as:
- runny nose
- watery, red eyes
- Koplik's spots
- blotchy rash
As an individual's condition worsens, so does his or her symptoms. Eventually, these issues can lead to other complications such as pneumonia and ear infections. That's why it's important for anyone who exhibits these signs to seek medical treatment.
CNN indicated that the infected student lives in Contra Costa County, and took the Bay Area Rapid Transit system to and from campus. The commutes took place in the mornings and late evenings of February 4 to 7.
1 CNN, "California commuters, students warned: You might have gotten the measles" February 14, 2014
2 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Measles (Rubeola): signs and symptoms" August 31, 2009