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Case of mumps confirmed at Nebraska school district

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Posted at 3:45 PM, Sep 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-05 16:45:49-04

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Last week, Pender Public Schools sent a letter to parents warning them that someone at the school was having symptoms consistent with a mumps diagnosis. This week, they sent a second letter saying the diagnosis was confirmed.

In the second letter, Pender Public Schools says the person "was immunized and left the building immediately upon becoming aware of symptoms." They went on to warn parents that the individual was unknowling contagious for a few days prior to the onset of any symptoms.

They are urging anyone in attendance to assume that they were exposed to the virus and to be vigilant in monitoring for symptoms such as:

  • Parotitis (Swollen glands under the jaw)
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Tiredness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Some people who get mumps do not have symptoms. Others may feel sick but will not have swollen glands.

You can read the full letter below:

Dear Parents,

This is a follow up letter to the information that was sent home on Friday regarding a suspected case of mumps. That letter stated testing had taken place and results would be available in 1-4 days. PPS officials were made aware of the results this morning.

We feel it is our duty to inform you that PPS now has a confirmed case of mumps in the building. This letter is to make you aware and to provide you with information that will help limit and hopefully prevent the spread of it. It is important to note that the individual in this confirmed case was immunized and left the building immediately upon becoming aware of symptoms. While that was an important step to take, the individual was unknowingly contagious for a few days prior to the onset of any symptoms.

We are one P-12 building, so we recommend that everyone in attendance assumes they have been exposed to the virus. People who have been fully vaccinated are about nine times less likely to get mumps than unvaccinated people who have the same exposure to mumps virus, but they can still get and pass the virus. It is therefore vital for everyone to be vigilant and diligent moving forward.

Mumps has an incubation period (the period between exposure and appearance of first symptoms) that ranges from 12-28 days, but parotitis typically develops 16-18 days after exposure.

Mumps usually causes the following symptoms for 7 to 10 days:

· Parotitis (Swollen glands under the jaw)

· Fever

· Headache

· Tiredness

· Loss of appetite
· Some people who get mumps do not have symptoms. Others may feel sick but will not have swollen glands.

If your student has the symptoms listed above, they must be kept home from school for a minimum of 5 days and until the symptoms have gone away. Parents are asked to please communicate with school personnel if your children experience these symptoms. It is also recommended to see a healthcare professional.

Mumps is usually spread through coughing and sneezing. Mumps can spread approximately 3 days before swollen glands appear and up to 5 days afterward. Mumps can spread through the saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose, or throat of an infected person when he or she:

· Coughs, sneezes, or talks

· Shares items such as cups or eating utensils with others

· Touches objects or surfaces with unwashed hands that are then touched by others Please also know school personnel have and will continue to take precautions within the building to help prevent this virus from spreading. Those with questions are welcome to contact school personnel who will do the best they can to provide answers. That said, family healthcare providers will likely be able to provide the best information and answers to those who have questions.