Mumps officially hits DeKalb County

By Rasmieyh Abdelnabi

DeKalb County has one confirmed case of mumps and seven probable cases.

According to Karen Grush, DeKalb County Public Health Director, the difference between a confirmed and probable case is that the probable cases are under investigation.

“My staff has been working on that, because some are waiting on blood work,â€? she said.

The person with the confirmed case of mumps was confined for nine days after the onset of the swelling, Grush said.

This is in accordance with the Illinois Communicable Disease Control and Immunization Rules and Regulations.

The people concerned with the seven probable cases will continue to be quarantined until their blood work returns from the lab, Grush said.

What makes a person have a probable case of mumps is contact with an infected person or showing symptoms of the disease.

“Normally, in a year we see one or two cases,â€? Grush said. “This year is more than we see.â€?

This is most likely because of the outbreak in Iowa spreading to Illinois.

“There is no reason to panic. Mumps is generally not a serious disease. There are a few, however, who develop complications,â€? Grush said.

Those complications include meningitis, deafness and inflammation of the testes and ovaries. The development of these complications are rare, she said.

There is concern some college-age students did not receive both vaccination doses required to protect against the mumps. Some may have only received one dose.

NIU and all state schools, however, require both doses, Grush said. Not all private schools have that requirement.

“The important thing is to check your immune status and for young adults, if they haven’t got the two doses, they should get the two doses,â€? she said.