Mumps Outbreak at Temple Rises to 50 Confirmed Cases

The number of total reported cases of mumps at Temple University has increased to 50, officials said, following the report that 16 cases of mumps were confirmed last week. The outbreak has spread from the university’s main Philadelphia campus to its Ambler campus in Montgomery County.

According to the officials from the University Health Services, 12 students have tested positive for the mumps, and an additional 37 are probable cases.

On March 15, Temple administrators announced a new updated vaccination policy following the increase in reported cases. Newly admitted students are now required to have two doses of the Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) vaccine; two doses of the chicken pox vaccine; and one dose of the Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis (TDAP) vaccine, according to Metro US.

Initial symptoms of the mumps include fever, headache, muscle aches, loss of appetite and lethargy, and lead to the swelling of salivary glands that causes a swollen jaw and puffy cheeks.

The contagious viral disease can be spread through coughing or sneezing, by saliva or coming into contact with contaminated surfaces like doorknobs.

In February, university officials advised students to self-isolate, avoid travel and limit contact with others for five days within the start of symptoms.

The mumps outbreak at Temple is the latest in almost two dozen similar incidents at colleges and universities across the nation in recent years.

“Over time, your immune response might decrease a little bit, probably about the time you’re a young adult, and on a college campus,” Kristen Feemster, medical director of the immunization and communicable diseases program of the Philadelphia Health Department, recently told WPVI-TV. “A college campus is a close-knit community, where there are probably more opportunities for transmission than you might have in other places.”

Indiana University in Bloomington also recently reported an outbreak of the disease, currently sitting at three confirmed cases.

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