Tags: mumps | outbreak | fordham | dorms

Mumps Outbreak Sweeps Through Fordham University Dorms

Friday, 21 Feb 2014 06:57 AM

By Alexandra Ward

New York City's Fordham University is experiencing a suspected mumps outbreak after 13 students reportedly contracted the viral disease.

According to the New York Daily News, 12 of the reported cases of mumps occurred at the school's campus in the Bronx with one additional case reported its Lincoln Center campus in Manhattan.

"Fordham does not yet have laboratory confirmation that the illness is mumps, but that is the most likely diagnosis," a university spokeswoman said in a statement.

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All of the sickened students were living in Fordham dormitories and have since either gone home or been isolated from the rest of the student population, the Daily News reported.

Mumps typically starts with a few days of fever, headaches, muscle aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite, and is followed by swelling of salivary glands. Rare complications include inflammation of the brain and spinal cord, fertility problems, and deafness, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

People who were vaccinated with the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine, as an infant and again between the ages of 4 and 6, are 90 percent less likely to contract mumps, according to the CDC. It's spread through droplets of saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose, or throat of an infected person, usually when the person coughs, sneezes, or talks. All Fordham University students are reportedly required to receive the vaccination.

"Mumps in college-age men and women usually runs its course without any lasting effects," Fordham said in a statement. "Nonetheless, the university is trying to see what connection there might be among the affected students while stepping up the frequency and intensity of cleanings in communal bathrooms."

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