According to a Virginia Commonwealth University system-wide email, the Richmond City Health Department has confirmed a case of mumps in the VCU community, and an outbreak of mumps has been identified in another university setting within the Richmond-metro area.
Mumps is a viral infection that is spread by saliva and respiratory secretions. About 20% of people who contract mumps are asymptomatic- the other 80% mostly experience painful swelling of the salivary glands, headache, malaise, rash, and fever. People with testicles may experience painful testicular swelling. It may take 12-25 days for symptoms to emerge after infection, and a person is contagious for the first 6-9 days. Most people in the United States will have either been exposed to mumps in childhood (if you were born previously to 1957), or have received the common MMR vaccine. If you have not received the vaccine, consider doing so- for students, it will be offered for free or low cost through the health system. If you have contracted mumps, avoid contact with uninfected people, ice swollen areas, use over the counter pain medications, and avoid acidic foods.