Mumps are the most worrisome disease that a person can have. It can lead to any complications that can last the patient a lifetime. This is why you have to learn all that you can about the condition so that you would be able to do with it properly in case you do encounter it in the near future.
This article will give you some of the written information that the need to know about the condition and how you can view with it properly without suffering any additional complications in the process. Before we go any further, let us first define what mumps really are.
The Real Meaning
Mumps refer to an acute illness that can be caused by a virus. It is mainly characterized by the swelling of the parotid glands just below the ears. Sometimes, the swelling can be seen by the jaw or within the slavery glands.
But if left untreated, you or a patient may develop certain complications such as meningitis or inflammation of membranes around the patient’s brain and pancreatitis which refers to the inflammation of the pancreas. However, mumps can usually be resolved without resulting to these adverse effects.
Major Causes and Some Risk Factors
This condition may occur in children ages two through twelve. However, individuals who were not vaccinated no matter what the age, can still be susceptible to viruses that may cause the condition. In addition to this, people with mumps are very contagious especially during the first 2 to 3 weeks after exposure.
Modes of Transmission
People can get mumps through direct contact as well as airborne droplets of the virus. Symptoms may begin to show 14 to 24 days after exposure to the virus. Because of this, it is important that you get in contact with your Physician right away so that he or she can administer the proper treatment as soon as possible to prevent complications.
Various Symptom of Mumps
Here are some of the sizes symptoms that you have to watch out for when it comes to mumps are as follows:
Soreness or swelling of the parotid glands on both sides of the jaw. In addition to this, you may also feel a certain amount of discomfort ranging from acute tenderness to severe pain when opening your mouth or swallowing food.
In addition to this, another symptom would be high fever usually lasting about 2 to 3 days. You may also experience soreness of your muscles as well as severe loss of appetite.
Aside from these, there are some other symptoms that you need to monitor if you want to be able to treat the condition right away. These are as follows:
- Earache (could be aggravated by mastication)
- Swelling of the testicles in men which may often subside after four days.
- Some people may also experience severe aversion to light. Patients may also be lethargic which can be a symptom for Meningitis.
- They may also experience upper abdominal pain as well as nausea and vomiting. This may indicate pancreatitis.
- Lastly, if a woman experiences lower abdominal pain, it may mean that there is a severe swelling of the ovaries. However, this is a very rare condition.
Reading that this condition may be very uncomfortable, it is still generally harmless compared to other conditions. In addition to this, the accompanying symptoms may normally subside after 10 days. However, a lot of children with mumps are more likely to be asymptomatic.
Mumps can be diagnosed through Serologic Antibody Testing. This will determine if the parotid or other glands in the body have severe enlargement issues. Blood specimens are compared for changes in the number of antibodies. This is usually done within the span of three weeks after the first test has been conducted. If there is a significant change in terms of the number of antibodies, it is most likely that the patient has mumps. The tests usually will be most reliable when done during the acute phase of the disease.
In order to treat the condition, Physicians usually prescribe analgesics for the pain or antipyretics for the fever. In addition to this, the doctors will advise the patient to take lots of fluids in order to prevent dehydration from either fever or anorexia.
If the patient had difficulty swallowing, intravenous means may be used to introduce fluids into the body. Here are some of the medications that can be used to treat mumps effectively.
In addition to the medications, patients are advised to have a complete bed rest for the duration of the fever. Using ice packs or heating pads may reduce pain for swollen glands. For male patients that have orchitis, doctors may advise you to have stronger pain medication. Aside from this, corticosteroids can also be used to reduce inflammation.
Questions to be Asked
These are some of the questions that you can ask your doctor if ever you encounter mumps in the future.
- Can you make a definite diagnosis of the disease?
- How serious may the condition be?
- Will pain medications the required?
- Is it necessary to go on bed rest?
- What can be done to have the fever go down?
In order to prevent the condition, there is a certain type of vaccine that is available in pediatric hospitals or wards. This is known as the MMR vaccine or measles, mumps and rubella vaccine. In this case, prevention is definitely better than a cure because there’s no definite cure for mumps after exposure just yet.
For this reason, it is most advisable for you to make sure that you are able to contact your doctor right away for possible treatment methods so let you would be able to prevent any complications from happening because of the mumps virus. If you are able to do this, then it would be easy for you to make sure that you and your family would be safe from the disease as much as possible.
Remember that your health and well-being lie in your own hands. If you feel any of the symptoms mentioned above, do not hesitate to contact your doctor right away.