Brazil’s Ministry of Health has reported 24,011 suspected cases of measles in 16 states as of Friday, September 13. Officials have confirmed 3339 cases, with the majority being reported in São Paulo state (3254). Isolated cases have also been confirmed in Pernambuco (13), Minas Gerais (13), Santa Catarina (12), Paraná (7), Rio Grande do Sul (7), Maranhão (3), Goiás (3), Federal District (3), Mato Grosso do Sul (1), Espírito Santo (1), Piauí (1), Rio Grande do Norte (1), Bahia (1), and Sergipe (1). A vaccination campaign is ongoing, and the Ministry of Health has advised all children between the ages of six months and one-year-old to be vaccinated.
Measles is a highly contagious viral disease that typically affects mostly children. It is transmitted via droplets from the nose, mouth, or throat of infected persons. Symptoms of measles are usually a high fever, which begins approximately ten to 12 days after exposure to the virus and lasts four to seven days. A runny nose, a cough, red and watery eyes, and small white spots inside the cheeks can develop in the initial stage. After several days, a rash erupts, usually on the face and upper neck. Over the course of about three days, the rash spreads, eventually reaching the hands and feet. The rash lasts for five to six days and then fades. On average, the rash appears 14 days after exposure to the virus (within a range of seven to 18 days). A vaccine is available.
Individuals in Brazil are advised to ensure their measles vaccination is up to date (including booster shots) and to contact their doctor with any questions or concerns. Anyone experiencing the above symptoms is urged to seek immediate medical attention.
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