Connecticut has had three confirmed cases of measles this year — the same number of cases as in the previous 10 years combined, according to public health officials.
All three people have recovered, and none of the three cases appear linked, according to the state Department of Public Health. The third case, announced Tuesday, occurred in an adult in New Haven County. The first two occurred in Fairfield County in February. One patient was a child and one was an adult.
DPH is urging people who are not sure if they’ve been vaccinated for measles to check with their doctors. People who had the disease in the past are considered to be immune.
According to the health department, people who are not immune to measles and are showing symptoms of the illness should call their health care providers rather than going to a health care facility to avoid exposing others.
Measles can spread quickly among people who have not been vaccinated for the disease, but according to the state health department, the majority of people who are exposed are not at risk for developing measles because they have been vaccinated or had the disease in the past.
Ninety-five percent of Connecticut children aged 19 to 35 months were vaccinated for measles, according to DPH. Among Connecticut kindergarten students during the 2012 to 2013 school year, 97 percent had received two doses of the measles vaccine.
Early symptoms of measles include a mild to moderate fever, cough, runny nose, red eyes and sore throat. Three to five days later, people develop a red or reddish-brown rash, usually starting on the face. When the rash appears, fevers can spike to more than 104 degrees.
The symptoms generally begin one to two weeks after a person is exposed to someone who has been infected.
People with measles can be contagious up to four days before the rash appears and for four days after the rash appears, according to DPH.