The Science Behind Measles and Why We Should Be Concerned

measles mumps and rubella vaccination.

Introduction: What is Measles, and How Does it Spread?

Measles is a highly contagious disease caused by a virus. It spreads through the air when someone who has measles breathes, coughs, or sneezes.

It’s been over 50 years since measles was eliminated from the U.S., but in recent years there have been outbreaks across the country. This is largely because parents are choosing not to vaccinate their children, which leaves them vulnerable to this and other preventable diseases.

How do you Prevent Measles?

Measles is a highly contagious, airborne disease. It can be prevented by immunization.

Vaccines are the most effective way to prevent measles. They contain a weakened form of the virus that will not make you sick but will help your immune system get ready for the real thing if you are exposed to it.

Most people in the U.S get their first dose of measles vaccine at 12 months and their second dose at 4-6 years old.

What Causes the Disease to Develop?

Measles is a highly contagious disease caused by a virus. The virus can be spread through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It can also be spread by touching objects that have been contaminated with the measles virus and then touching one’s eyes, nose, or mouth.

The disease starts with a fever that lasts for two or three days and then causes a rash that lasts about four to seven days. It is important to take precautions against measles from the moment you are exposed to it, because there is no cure for measles once you have it.

How is the Disease Diagnosed?

Measles is a highly contagious respiratory disease. It has an incubation period of 10-12 days and can cause serious complications such as pneumonia, encephalitis and death.

The disease is diagnosed by taking a blood sample to detect the presence of antibodies against the virus. A throat swab or nasopharyngeal aspirate can also be used to diagnose measles.

Treating & Preventing Measles

Measles is a highly contagious disease that can be prevented by vaccination. It is caused by a virus in the paramyxovirus family.

The measles virus is spread through the air, usually when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Measles is so contagious that if one person has it, 90% of the people close to that person who are not immune will also become infected.

Measles starts with a fever, runny nose, cough and sore throat, which are followed by a rash that spreads all over the body. Most people recover within 2-3 weeks but it can be fatal in some cases.

What are the Symptoms of Measles?

Measles can be a serious illness. It is a viral disease that spreads from person to person. The measles virus typically infects the lungs and then spreads to the brain and rest of the body.

The following are some of the most common symptoms of measles:


-Cough, runny nose, sneezing

-High fever

-Red eyes

-Sore, red throat

What are the Complications of Measles?

Measles is a viral infection that can lead to complications such as pneumonia, brain encephalitis, and corneal blindness.

Complications of measles:

– Pneumonia: It is the most common complication of measles and it occurs in about 1 out of every 20 cases. It is usually mild and lasts for a few days. Complications can include bronchitis, bronchiolitis, croup, or even death (in extreme cases).

– Brain encephalitis: This complication occurs in 1 out of every 1000 cases and it can be fatal. Symptoms include high fever, headache, neck stiffness, confusion, seizures (fits), and coma.

– Corneal blindness: This complication only occurs when the virus infects the eye (usually due to contact with an infected person’s tears or saliva).

Conclusion: The Importance of Immunization to Prevent Disease

Immunization is the process of introducing an antigen into a person to stimulate the body’s immune system to develop antibodies and/or T cells that will help fight future infection by that same antigen.


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