LSU campus mumps outbreak rises to 12 cases

WWL Newsroom
February 10, 2020 - 1:55 pm

Samara Heisz/Getty Images


We’re up to 12 cases in the LSU centered mumps outbreak that was first made public with five cases reported last week.

State Immunization Director Dr. Frank Welch says all students need to receive both doses of the MMR vaccine to protect against further spread, along with the usual health and safety advice.

“Washing hands, covering your cough, staying away from sick people is important, and not sharing cups or utensils or drinks or anything like that, especially as we go into Mardi Gras season,” says Welch.

Mumps feels like a particularly nasty cold, and also involves visible swelling of the salivary glands.

Welch says there’s been a nationwide string of mumps outbreaks on college campuses. He says college dorm rooms, parties, and sporting events are perfect places to spread the virus.

“You really do have to be near someone who sneezes, sharing cups, glasses, forks, utensils, sharing closer personal spaces than say like the flu,” says Welch.

An LSU tennis match over the weekend was canceled when it was discovered a tennis player had been infected.

Finding a ground zero in the outbreak has been difficult so far. Welch says that’s because there’s a significant lag between when you are infected, and when you show symptoms.

“It can take upwards of three weeks, so often times it is really hard to go backward three weeks and find out where someone might have been exposed,” says Welch.

There is one reported case of a student living on campus who is currently being quarantined in their apartment.

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