Six probable cases of mumps have been reported in Douglas County in the past week and a half, officials at the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department announced today.
The individuals contracting mumps - an acute viral disease that results in swelling and discomfort of the jaw - range from 19 to 26 years of age, officials said.
An individual can be contagious seven days before swelling to nine days after. Fever and headache are sometimes also present. Mumps is spread through direct contact, such as coughing or sneezing, according to the health department.
Local health officials say if you suspect you have mumps, you should should stay home from work or school and limit close contact with others for nine days after onset of symptoms. Individuals with swelling in the jaw area for two or more days without other apparent cause should see their health care provider immediately, officials said.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment is receiving an increased number of suspected mumps reports, health officials said. The state of Iowa is also seeing an increase, with 187 cases of mumps reported between January 1, 2006, and March 24, 2006, with the majority in young adults, local health officials said.