Health department: Henrico students at 3 schools could have been exposed to mumps

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — The Henrico County Health Department sent a letter to parents at three Henrico schools Tuesday warning them their children may have been exposed to a potential case of mumps.

The three schools that are affected are Tuckahoe Middle School, Freeman High School, and Godwin High School.

Mumps is an acute viral disease that is transmitted from person-to-person through direct contact with respiratory droplets spread by coughing and sneezing or through contact with saliva from an ill person.

The Health Department said in the letter that in order to help control the spread of mumps, individuals should refrain from sharing items that come in contact with saliva, such as drink bottles, food, and lip balms.

“Symptoms of mumps, you can have a headache, you can have fever, you can have aches, body aches, fatigue and then sort of the characteristic symptom is swelling in the salivary glands,” explained Laura Young with the Henrico County Health District. “So it can be sort of in the jaw or the face on one side or both sides.”

The letter goes on to statE that students and staff of the school’s affected should monitor for signs and symptoms consistent with the mumps virus until March 26, which is 25 days after the date of last potential exposure. If additional cases of mumps are identified, this time period may be expanded. If students develop signs or symptoms of mumps, they are asked to see their health care provider and take the letter with them.

They also recommend all individuals review their immunization status to ensure that they are up-to-date and discuss the need for vaccination with their healthcare provider.

This is a developing story. Stay with 8News online and on air for the latest updates.

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