State health officials announced yesterday another case of measles has been diagnosed in the Lowell area. This second case at…
State health officials announced yesterday another case of measles has been diagnosed in the Lowell area.
This second case at the Lowell Community Health Center comes days after another patient has been diagnosed with measles, the State Department of Public Health said yesterday.
“Our effort is now to identify people who may be at risk of getting sick and have them vaccinated,” states state epidemiologist. Catherine Brown. “There are no known links between the two cases.”
The infectious disease is caused by a virus that spreads from person to person who is most dangerous to children under 5 years, pregnant women and persons with weakened immune systems according to DPH.
“We take it very seriously and we have taken an aggressive attitude to the word,” told Lowell Mayor William Samaras Herald. “It’s an issue we have to deal with, but right now it’s not an outbreak.”
DPH said that the patient was diagnosed Thursday was present at a number of other places, including a T.J. Maxx in Chelmsford and Walmart in Tewksbury, days before it could have exposed others to the disease.
The state health officials urged all who do not know their measles immunization status to receive at least one dose of measles,. When inoculated, people are unlikely to develop measles, even if they are exposed, “DPH said.
But there is a risk.
“Measles are incredibly contagious,” says Paul Sax, Clinical Director of the Infectious Disease at Brigham and Women’s Hospital
“Therefore, widespread immunization is important. People get seriously ill. Everyone is going to be immunized. One of the most important messages. Get immunized as soon as possible. Immunization after the disease can still prevent it. It’s not too late.
“Measles has happily become a rare disease. But there has been a great deal of outbreaks in Europe. New outbreaks have occurred in New York and California. People who have been exposed and who are not immunized and develop a disease that starts as cold should contact their doctor immediately. “
Earlier this year, the federal disease control and prevention measles centers remain a leading cause of vaccine-prevented infant mortality.” But: “Fairs remain in many other countries and can be entered into the United States by unaccompanied travelers (American or foreign visitors). “
Symptoms occur 1
0 days to two weeks after exposure and may resemble those that are pre-chilled. Skin rashes may develop two to four days later.
State healthcare officers say that individuals exposed or who develop symptoms of measles should call their health care provider before visiting an office, clinic or emergency room, which may put others at risk and should be avoided.
Kathleen McKiernan contributed to this report.