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Measles, Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment and Prevention

What is measles?

Measles is an infectious and contagious diseases and is known to cause rashes all over the body. It is also known as red measles or rubeola. The measles vaccine works against the illness. The common vaccine works against MMR i.e. measles, mumps and the contagious rubella and also against MMRV i.e. measles, rash mumps, contagious rubella and the varicella. During child hood this vaccine has been given as a regular shot. This is the reason behind reduced measles in the Canada and USA.


Causes of measles

Measles is a viral disease. It is contagious and easily spread whenever the infected person sneezes, cough, or share any kind of eatable material with others. Air is known to spread the virus from place to place. It means you are likely to get measles if you are nearby any person having measles even if he didn’t sneeze or cough directly on you.


The life time of this virus is very healthy and you can spread it to others 4 days before the appearance of rash to the 4 days after the appearance of the rash. The spreading of virus depends on unawareness because you can easily spread it when you are ill with measles and you don’t know that you are having this contagious virus. Luckily if you get stuck by measles once in your life you are not going to get it gain in your life and according to one estimate people who born before 1957 had this virus once in their life.

If you have had measles, you can’t get it again. Most people born before 1957 have had measles.

Symptoms of measles

The initial symptoms of measles include a bad cold with high fever, sneezing with runny nose, and hacking cough with sore throat. After that you may develop a swelling of lymph nodes in your neck. Tiredness can be felt and you may have diarrhea reddish eyes. Soon after the disappearance of these symptoms red spots starts appearing in your mouth. After the appearance of these spots rashes the real symptoms starts appearing all over the body.


At elder stage if you get measles the signs and symptoms are more worsen then in children. The disease looks very dangerous because the symptoms appear after 7 to 18 days you have been exposed to the individual having measles. This specific time is known as incubation period.

How is measles diagnosed?

Explain all the symptoms to doctor if you think that you have measles after complete examination the doctor may advice you a blood test and viral culture in case he found measles.


Treatment of measles

Measles can be best treated at home. All what you have to do is to take medicines which helps in lowering of the fever. Along with this take fluids and rest. Avoid people because it is contagious disease. Anybody having measles should stay away from day care, school, public places and work places for 4 to 5 days after the appearance of rash.

The doctors suggest Vitamin A to the patient. Most of the time you will get out of measles within 2 weeks. But it is known that sometime measles impart bad impact on you like lungs infection leading to pneumonia or encephalitis in which brain swells. In some case it can lead to seizures or meningitis as well.


If you don’t have vaccination against measles then you can prevent it by getting immunoglobin or the vaccine as soon as possible to get rid of the measles. It is advisable that babies younger than 12 months, pregnant ladies and all those individuals having impaired immune system and are reluctant to get affected by measles need to get IG as soon as possible. This will surely reduce the risk of getting measles. If you get sick by measles once in your life your body will produce immunity against measles and you are not likely to get measles again.

Why is prevention important?

Vaccination is important because measles sometime known to cause severe problems. In different news a false claim was made that there is link between vaccines and autism. But in reality this is nothing else than a false myth and vaccines have no link with autism. Measles is known to be one of the most contagious and spreadable disease. Outbreaks naturally occurs in measles. It is generally believe that if a travelling individual having measles travel to the countries where the people are not immune or didn’t have vaccination against measles then he can spread measles in the inhabitants of other countries to which he was traveling.  Meanwhile if you are traveling to a country where people have measles and you didn’t get the vaccine then you are at the risk of having measles.


If you are unaware of the fact whether you have measles or not and you are planning to travel somewhere else then consult with your doctor and get the vaccine before leaving. As the awareness has been made and now most of the people know the importance of vaccination so always get vaccination for you child as soon as possible at the earliest time. One thing we suggest over here that if you get vaccine you will never get affected by measles no matter how close you are to the individual having measles. As our body produce immunity against measles after having attack of measles for the first time, so you are not likely to get the measles again in your life. But care is always advisable because our body is reluctant to different diseases. Don’t ignore nausea and simple rashes because they may develop in to measles.

Proper counselling is still needed to aware people about the vaccination and its useful impacts especially in the under developed countries. In these countries NGO,s and other public sectors are very active to help people about vaccinations of measles and other contagious diseases. But still great debate is required to get people aware of what is measles and how it spreads and what are the overall consequences of measles.


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