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Measles on the rise?


CDC, county issue warnings for vaccinations



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July 06, 2011 - By Katelyn Crain

Review Intern

If you or your children are not up to date on vaccinations, don't wait any longer. Get to a doctor and get it done!

Recent studies have shown there is an increase in the amount of measles found in the U.S, and according to the Oakland County Health Division, "the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recorded the highest number of reported measles cases in the U.S. since 1996."

Measles is spread from person to person through fluids from the mouth or the nose -- such activities as sneezing or coughing can spread this. It is very contagious and can lead to worse illnesses that may end fatally.

According to George Miller, Director for the Department of Health and Human Services of Oakland County, there has only been one case found in Lake Orion this year.

"We have had absolutely no cases in the school district this past year. We have only had one case in Lake Orion and it was an adult that was visiting the area from Europe," Miller said. "And in this case, the illness was not spread."

Even though measles cases are rare around the Lake Orion area, it should not stop people from avoiding this illness all together.

According to Dr. Christine Sypitkowski, Country Doctor Medical Group on South Lapeer Road, the best thing to do is to get vaccinated to protect yourself from the sickness.

"People need to make sure they are getting checked by their doctor," Sypitkowski said. "If they think they have it, the biggest thing is to have a doctor confirm that what they have is, in fact, the measles and then go from there. It's important to go because you want to make sure you don't have any complications."

This sickness is and can be an extremely serious thing. Based on data from the Immunization Action Coalition, 30 percent of reported cases experience one or more complications; some may result in death.

Symptoms of the measles may include a fever, dry cough and/or runny nose; as well as a sore throat, irritated eyes with sensitivity to light. Tiny white spots with bluish-white centers may be found inside the mouth on the inner lining of the cheek, and a skin rash made up of large, flat blotches that often flow into one another. The infection occurs in sequential stages over a period of two to three weeks.

According to the Oakland County Health Division, the cause of the rise in measles cases have "been linked to unvaccinated U.S. citizens traveling abroad, unvaccinated visitors in the U.S. or unvaccinated people exposed to the imported cases."

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