University of Louisville confirms first case of mumps - WDRB 41 Louisville News

University of Louisville confirms first case of mumps

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Several cases of mumps have already popped up at the University of Kentucky and Indiana University. Now, the University of Louisville is reporting its first case.

"It doesn't surprise me, campuses are a breeding ground for all sorts of viruses and diseases," said Emily Bryan, a Biology major at U of L.

Fewer than 20,000 people catch mumps every year, but the infection is spreading among college students.

Three UK students tested positive for mumps last month and 15 others displayed symptoms including swollen salivary glands,

Indiana University confirmed eight cases of mumps and even provided free MMR vaccines to faculty, staff and students.

U of L is treating its first case.

"I heard it was going around like UK so I figured it was going to get here eventually," said Michael Hostetler, a U of L student.

A sophomore at the university tested positive for mumps on Tuesday.

"My understanding was she went to UK and probably got infected up there," said Phillip Bressoud, the Executive Director of Campus Health Services at U of L.

The mumps virus causes fever, headache, muscle pain, loss of appetite and swollen glands. Doctors say it spreads easily through coughing, sneezing, runny noses, kissing and sharing cups.

However, there may be a bigger concern for young adults infected with mumps. It can cause inflammation in the ovaries and testicles, which can lead to infertility.

While the mumps vaccination is often required, it doesn't mean you won't get sick.

"It's very unusual because it's a routine vaccination. You don't see it very often but there have been, in the last couple of years, some outbreaks in college students, some immunized and some not," said Bressoud.  

Bressoud sent an email to U of L's faculty, staff and students on Tuesday warning them of the first mumps case.

While outbreaks of the mumps is rare, it's something the University of Louisville planned for years ago.

"U of L is the only state institution that has mandatory immunization requirements so students are all required to have two doses of the measles vaccine and we're about 95-percent to 97-percent compliant and we've had that in place for two years," said Bressoud.

U of L officials say they hope the immunization requirement will help keep the number of mumps cases on campus to a minimum.

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