11 July 2024

Seventy-nine people, mostly young children, have been infected with the highly infectious measles virus since the beginning of this year, but there have been no fatalities, according to the Disease Control Department.

35.44% of the patients were children aged under 4, 18.99% were aged from 25 to 34 and 16.46% were aged from 35 to 44. Most of the cases were found in Yasothon, Phuket, Yala, Narathiwat and Bangkok.

The department said most were isolated cases adding, however, that more cases are expected this week as the virus is transmitted through respiratory system.

Measles symptoms appear 7-14 days after contact with the virus and typically include a high fever, cough, runny nose and watery eyes. The measles rash appears on the face 3-5 days after the initial symptoms and spreads to the arms and legs, after which fever will ease. In some cases there can be serious complications, such as lung or brain infection, which can be life threatening, said the department.

As a precaution against infection, the department has recommended that children aged 9-12 months receive their first MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) inoculation and a second dose at the age of two and a half.

Parents are advised to take their children to see a doctor if they develop a cough and rash and keep them at home for four days, if it is confirmed that they are infected, to prevent the spread of the virus.