Health department investigating mumps cases at William Penn, St. Georges Technical

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Meredith Newman - The News Journal


The health department is currently investigating three confirmed cases of mumps in New Castle County high school students, officials said Thursday.


The cases involve two students at William Penn High School and one student at St. Georges Technical High School, they said.


The Division of Public Health declined to provide more information about the students, citing privacy reasons.


Last week, Colonial School District officials announced that one William Penn High School student had been diagnosed. At the time, officials said the last date that other students may have been exposed to the student was Jan. 28.


The Division of Public Health is working with the schools to "provide guidance for limiting the spread of illness and to identify any other potential cases," officials said.


Best known for causing puffy cheeks and swollen jaws, the most common symptom of the highly contagious disease is swollen salivary glands. Other common symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches and loss of appetite.

Symptoms can develop from 12 days to 25 days after exposure.


Two years ago, in 2018, was the first time in a decade that Delaware experienced an outbreak of mumps, when more than a dozen people were diagnosed with the condition.


Since 2015, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has seen a substantial increase in the number of mumps cases.


Health officials recommend washing hands to prevent the spread of the disease. Parents should make sure their children's vaccinations are up to date including the Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine.


Contact Meredith Newman at 302-324-2386 or at mnewman@delawareonline.com. Follow her on Twitter at @merenewman.

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