Measles Can Be Very Serious

Measles Can Be Very Serious

April 12, 2024 in Family Practice, News, Public Health, Regional Medical Center

Measles is NOT just a little rash. Measles can be very dangerous, especially for babies and young children. According to the Centers for Disease Control:

  • About 1 out of 5 people who get measles will be hospitalized
  • 1 out of every 1,000 people with measles will develop brain swelling due to infection (encephalitis), which may lead to brain damage
  • 1 to 3 out of 1,000 people with measles will die, even with the best care

As of April 4, according to the Iowa Health and Human Services, a total of 113 measles cases have been reported in 18 states. These numbers are very alarming as the current number of cases is more than the entire year of 2023. Call your healthcare provider immediately if you think you or your child have been exposed to measles.

Measles symptoms typically include a high fever (may spike to 104°F or higher); cough; runny nose; red, watery eyes; and a rash which breaks out 3-5 days after other symptoms begin. Symptoms present 7-14 days after a measles infection.

Help protect your child. Call your healthcare provider today to make sure they are up to date with their measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine. People are still encouraged to get vaccinated if they have not received a measles vaccine. Children are recommended to receive two doses of the MMR vaccine: the first at 12-15 months of age and again between 4-6 years. Two doses of the MMR vaccine are about 97% effective at preventing measles; one dose is about 93% effective. Learn more at

If you develop measles symptoms and are unvaccinated, do not go to school or work. Call your healthcare provider before going to the clinic or hospital. It is very important to call first so you are not present by others in a waiting room and possibly infecting other patients.