Cheerleaders possibly exposed to mumps in Dallas

Posted March 09, 2018

The Texas Department of State Health Services issued a letter advising those who took part in the competition from February 23 to February 25 at the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Center in Dallas that they may have been exposed because a person at the event had the disease.

Health officials learned that someone with the illness had attended the championships, which ran from February 23 to 25, and sent a letter warning about possible exposure.

Van Deusen said the state's health department sent precautionary letters to people from 39 different states who attended the cheerleading competition.

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Mumps, according to state health officials, is typically contracted through saliva and respiratory droplets created when a person with the virus coughs or sneezes. Health officials advise people never to share glasses, utensils, cigarettes or other items, as that could also spread the virus.

People who have tested positive for mumps are contagious for three to five days after symptoms appear.

"The incubation period for mumps can last from two weeks to a month, so the cheerleaders in Dallas should watch for symptoms of fever, muscle aches and swollen glands", said NBC News correspondent Dr. John Torres.

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Most children receive a measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR) shot at 12 to 15 months and another dose a few years later - sometime between age 4 and 6, according to the Texas DSHS.

Cheerleaders who have already received two doses of the mumps vaccine are encouraged to get an additional booster dose of the MMR vaccine.

While vaccination against mumps is the best protection against mumps infection, vaccinated individuals may still become infected.

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