Warning of possible mumps exposure following national cheer competition in Texas

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - More than 23,000 athletes from across the country took part in a national cheer competition in Texas and now the state's health department is sending out a warning to parents.

The Texas Department of State Health Services is alerting the public anyone at the competition from Feb. 23 to Feb. 25 at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas should be aware of the exposure.

The following letter was released on March 2:

This letter is to inform you that you or your child may have been exposed to a person with mumps at the National Cheerleaders Association (NCA) All-Star National Championship on Feb. 23 to Feb. 25, 2018 at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, Texas. We are sending this letter to make you aware of this exposure and to provide additional information about mumps.

Mumps is a contagious viral illness. Mumps symptoms include swollen or tender salivary glands, swollen or tender testicles, low grade fever, tiredness, and muscle aches. Many people do not have any symptoms.
Mumps is spread through saliva and respiratory droplets created when a person sick with mumps coughs and sneezes. Sharing cups and utensils may also spread the virus. The time from being infected with the virus to developing symptoms can be as long as 25 days but is typically 14 to 18 days. People with mumps are infectious three days before to five days after swollen glands appear. Infected people without symptoms of mumps may still be able to transmit the virus.

Children usually receive the first mumps, measles, and rubella vaccine (MMR) at 12 to 15 months of age and the second dose at 4 to 6 years. MMR vaccine is not recommended for children less than 1 year of age. Adults who have not had two doses of MMR vaccine can receive the vaccine. However, pregnant women or people who are immunocompromised should not receive the MMR vaccine. If you are unsure of you or your child’s vaccination status or if your child has not received both doses, consult your healthcare provider and explain the situation.

While vaccination against mumps is the best protection against mumps infection, vaccinated individuals may still become infected. Anyone diagnosed with or suspected of having mumps should stay home five days after swollen glands appear.

If you, your child, or any other individuals linked to this event experience or have experienced mumps symptoms, please contact your healthcare provider and inform them of your exposure to mumps. If you or your healthcare provider has any questions, please call your local health department or the Texas Department of State Health Services at 512-776-7676.