The number of people dying from measles has fallen to a record low, driven down by mass vaccination campaigns, but outbreaks in crisis zones such as Syria remain a threat, the UN said Thursday.
In the United States, vaccination programs have all but eliminated measles. But before a vaccine became available, almost everyone came down with the disease, and over 450 people died annually between 1953 and 1963, usually from complications.
An epidemic of measles has been reported in Swansea, Wales with a total of 693 cases reported so far. The Public Health Wales (PHW) have commented that in the last two days a further 73 cases of measles have been confirmed.
Measles are one of the first diseases that occur when immunization coverage rates begin to fall, which leads to large-scale outbreaks. Fortunately, even though measles is a highly contagious viral disease, it is vaccine-preventable.
In the U. S. from Jan. 1 through March 28, 2008, 24 confirmed cases of measles resulting from importations from endemic countries have been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Three thousand children have been infected by measles and 165 have died in a northern region of Nigeria; where 90 per cent of the children have not been immunized. an emergency response team is on the scene.
This patient presented on the third pre-eruptive day with “Koplik spots” indicative of the beginning onset of measles. In the prodromal or beginning stages, one of the signs of the onset of measles is the eruption of “Koplik spots” on the mucosa of the cheeks and tongue, which appear as irregularly-shaped, bright red spots often with a bluish-white central dot.