Measles Case in Tarrant County Is the Fourth in Dallas-Fort Worth, 13th Across Texas

A case of the measles has been confirmed in Tarrant County, health officials said Thursday.The case involves a Tarrant County resident who traveled internationally to an area where there has been an increase in measles cases, according to Vinny Taneja, director of the county's public-health department. Health officials said it is unrelated to other local measles cases.It is the fourth case of measles confirmed in North Texas this year — there have been two in Collin County and one in Denton County — and 13th in Texas. There were nine cases of measles in Texas in all of 2018.The last time measles was reported in Tarrant County was January 2015."We are always concerned about the health of any resident who travels and returns to Tarrant County and shortly afterward develops signs or symptoms of a disease," Taneja said in a statement. "We are grateful for the cooperation we're receiving from everyone involved in this case and feel confident the public is safe."The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that children get two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine — one between 12 and 15 months and the second between 4 and 6 years — to be fully protected against measles.According to the CDC, two doses of the vaccine are 97 percent effective against the measles, while one dose is 93 percent effective. Vaccinated people who still get the disease tend to have a milder illness.The agency recommends that adults with no evidence of immunity get at least one dose of the vaccine. Doctors can test for immunity, but the CDC says that the test may cost more than the vaccine and require additional doctor visits and that there's no harm in getting another dose of the vaccine.Signs and symptomsIt typically takes about two weeks from the time of exposure to the measles virus for a rash to develop, but it can take up to three weeks. People are contagious from four days before they get the rash to four days after it appears and should seek medical treatment and isolate themselves at home.The rash begins on the face as flat, red spots and spreads down the neck and trunk to the rest of the body.Other symptoms include a fever higher than 101 degrees, cough, runny nose and red, watery eyes.People with measles symptoms who think they may have been exposed to the virus should call their health providers in advance of a visit so precautions can be taken to prevent exposure to staff members and other patients.About one out of four people who get measles will be hospitalized. About one out of every 1,000 will develop brain swelling because of infection, which may lead to brain damage. One or two out of every 1,000 people with measles will die, even with the "best care," the CDC said.  Continue reading...

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