Measles cases on the rise in England

Health officials in England report more measles cases in the current outbreak, 170 additional cases in the past five weeks.

This brings the total to 757 laboratory confirmed measles cases in England since the beginning of the year. This includes 268 cases in London. In addition, the South-East (161), South-West (118), West Midlands (85) and Yorkshire and Humberside (73) reported the most cases.

Measles is a highly contagious viral disease that remains one of the leading causes of mortality among young children globally, despite the availability of a safe and effective vaccine. Transmission from person-to-person is airborne, as well as by direct or indirect contact of secretions (nasal, throat) of an infected person. Initial symptoms, which usually appear 10–12 days after infection, include high fever, runny nose, bloodshot eyes, cough, and tiny white spots on the inside of the mouth. Several days later, a rash develops, starting on the face and upper neck and gradually spreads downwards. A patient is infectious four days before the start of the rash for up to four days after the appearance of the rash.

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