DSHS: Consider Mumps in Symptomatic Patients in Wake of Current Outbreak

A Nov. 30 health advisory from the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) encourages physicians to consider mumps as a diagnosis in patients with unilateral or bilateral swelling of the parotid or salivary glands preceded by a low-grade fever, myalgia, malaise, or headache. 

The advisory comes after investigation of two mumps outbreaks in North Central Texas. One outbreak occurred in Dallas County involving five adults. Another outbreak occurred in Johnson County involving 10 cases primarily in children.

Texas requires diagnosis or suspicion of mumps to be reported. DSHS urges physicians not to wait for a laboratory confirmation of mumps to report suspected cases. Mumps reports should be made to your local health department or by calling (800) 705-8868.

According to DSHS, physicians should also consider mumps in patients who have traveled outside the state or who have come into contact with those infected with mumps. Several counties in Arkansas have reported mumps cases.

DSHS specifies that up to 20 percent of those infected may be asymptomatic. Other rare complications of mumps include deafness, pancreatitis, oophoritis, meningitis, and encephalitis. 

Physicians should collect the following specimens for all patients suspected of having mumps: 

  • Buccal swab (preferred) for viral isolation and PCR testing. 
  • Blood drawn and submitted for serological testing to detect IgM antibody.

Action, Dec. 15, 2016

Last Updated On

April 20, 2018

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