Two cases of measles confirmed in Johnson County, Kansas

Two cases of measles were recently confirmed in Johnson County, Kansas, according to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) and the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment (JCDHE).

The measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine has made cases of measles, a viral respiratory disease, rare in the United States. The disease affects 20 million people and kills 164,000 worldwide each year.

The county department is currently conducting an investigation of the spread of the disease and those possibly affected are being contacted.

"The best way to keep from getting the disease is by being vaccinated," Robert Moser, the secretary and state health officer of the KDHE, said. "Protect children by making sure they have the MMR vaccine when they are 12 to 15 months old, and again before they enter kindergarten."

Those who experience measles symptoms are encouraged to stay home, unless they are visiting a healthcare provider. Patients should call healthcare providers before arriving so that they can take the appropriate measures to protect the staff and other patients.

Symptoms of measles infections show up one to two weeks after being exposed. Symptoms include fever, a blotchy rash starting on the head and moving to the lower extremities, cough, runny nose, red eyes, aches and tiny white spots with bluish-white centers on the inside of the mouth.