Healthy Communities

Mumps

Mumps is a viral illness that is transmitted by direct contact with respiratory droplets or saliva from an infected person. It is best known for painful, swollen salivary glands that show up as puffy cheeks and swollen jaw. Boys may also have painful, swollen testicles. Other symptoms include fever, headache, muscles aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite. There is no treatment, and symptoms usually resolve themselves within a few weeks. Mumps is usually a mild disease in children, but adults may have more serious disease with complications. Vaccination against Mumps is available with MMR vaccine.

The MMR vaccine is safe and effective. The vaccine is not perfect. Two doses of the MMR shot are about 88 percent effective at preventing the mumps. That means that if you have 100 people who are fully vaccinated, 88 of them will be fully protected. The remaining 12 will still be vulnerable to mumps. If it were not for the vaccine, however, we would be seeing many, many more cases of the mumps.

Also, we have only seen a few cases with complications, like swelling of the brain or testicles. Normally, we would expect to see many more persons with complications. This tells us that even though some vaccinated individuals are still getting the mumps, they are experiencing mild disease. The vaccine remains the best protection we have against the mumps. It is a live virus vaccine and is not recommended for pregnant women or patients with a weakened immune system. Adults born before 1957 are generally considered to be immune to mumps and do not need to receive the MMR vaccine.

The current CDC recommendations for MMR vaccination are as follows:

MMR vaccines are available at the Local Health Unit in your county, and may also be available at your doctor’s office or your local pharmacy.

There was an outbreak of mumps in Arkansas in 2016-17. There were 2,951 cases. In response to that outbreak, ADH required students in the same school with vaccine exemptions for the MMR (Mumps, Measles, and Rubella) vaccine to be excluded from school for 26 days from the date of exposure and until the outbreak ended. Students with non-medical exemptions, who receive the recommended doses of MMR vaccine, could return to school immediately.

Mumps Fact Sheets: English | Spanish | Marshallese

For Healthcare Professionals
Mumps Laboratory Instructions
ER Mumps Signs
Symptoms ER Sign in English
Symptoms ER Sign in Spanish
Resources
CDC
Rules and Regulations
Communicable Disease Reporting Form
Immunization Fact Sheet Mumps
Mumps Report Q&A
Final Mumps Update Report - 2016/17 Outbreak

Public Health Accrediation Board
Arkansas Department of Health
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