Measles outbreak hits 21 states, including Pennsylvania

UCSF School of Medicine

The other states reporting cases of the measles were Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Washington.

The CDC's website reports measles is still common in many parts of the world, including some countries in Europe, Asia, the Pacific, and Africa.

Measles is a contagious disease caused by an airborne virus, which spreads through the infected person's cough or sneeze. The total number of cases that year is the highest number since measles elimination was declared in the United States in 2000. The number is likely to surpass the 118 reported measles cases from 15 states in 2017. Some symptoms are a high fever, cough, runny nose and red eyes, followed by a rash that typically starts on the face and spreads to the rest of the body.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control said Wednesday that from January 1 to July 14, 107 people had contracted the disease. A massive outbreak led to 667 cases in 27 states.

The CDC said the majority of people who contracted measles were unvaccinated. While the disease is treatable, the CDC said, one or two out of every 1,000 children who get measles die from complications.

Officials urged parents to vaccinate their children.


The CDC recommends children get two doses of the vaccine, starting with the first dose at 12 to 15 months of age, and the second dose at 4 through 6 years of age.

While one dose of MMR is about 93 percent effective in preventing measles, two doses are about 97 percent effective.

Measles can spread when it reaches a community in the US where groups of people are unvaccinated.

Unvaccinated infants are especially vulnerable to complications of measles, so they are best protected by herd immunity, the CDC advises.

The source of the infections has not been identified, according to the health department.

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