Health officials in California’s Orange County have now confirmed a total of 16 measles cases.
Health professionals have yet to determine the exact source for the measles infections.
Orange County is the link between 10 cases, with patients from other parts of the United States having visited Disneyland California Adventure Park or Disneyland in December.
Six other measles infections have been diagnosed, but the patients did not have any contact with Disneyland or the cases related to that area.
Health officials note that these cases are evidence that measles is becoming more widespread throughout Orange County; they expect the outbreak to spread.
A serious and contagious disease, measles spreads through both air and direct contact. People may not realize that they have measles, as carriers are contagious for about four days before serious symptoms arise. A rash surfaces only after those four days pass. Carriers remain contagious for another four additional days after the rash surfaces.
Measles symptoms include cough, fever, rash, and red, watery eyes. Certain individuals, such as pregnant women, young children, and individuals with weakened immune systems, are at a higher risk for contracting the illness.
Health professionals request that anyone with measles symptoms call their physician before going to a healthcare facility. Doctors seek to minimize the exposure between carriers and healthy individuals.
The Health Care Agency warns the public to be aware of the symptoms of measles. They encourage everyone to receive vaccines, as they have determined that those are the best prevention methods for measles.