Thu, Mar 30, 2017 - Page 4 News List

Centers for Disease Control announces third case of imported measles this year

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

A 27-year-old Taiwanese man has been confirmed to have the nation’s third case of imported measles this year, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said on Tuesday, adding that the man became infected while on vacation in Europe.

The man, who lives in northern Taiwan, visited France, Belgium and the Netherlands as a member of a tour group from March 7 to March 15. He transferred flights in Bangkok before returning to Taiwan, CDC Deputy Director-General Philip Lo (羅一鈞) said.

The man first went to a clinic complaining of a fever on March 19, then returned on Thursday last week when his symptoms persisted, Lo said, adding that the next day, after developing a rash, he sought treatment at a hospital.

The hospital reported the case and asked the man to quarantine himself at home, Lo said, adding that test results on Tuesday confirmed that he has measles.

“Measles can easily be misdiagnosed as hives, which is caused by an allergic reaction,” Lo said. “Measles has an incubation period of about seven days and the man was likely infected during his vacation in Europe.”

Outbreaks of measles have been reported in European countries and in Thailand, so the centers is unable to specify the exact location he became infected, but it is monitoring the condition of 166 people who came into direct contact with the man after his return to Taiwan, he said.

However, the man caught a bus from Hsinchu to MRT Dapinglin Station in New Taipei City at 11am on Friday last week, so people who were on the same vehicle, operated by Yalan Bus, should be alert for any symptoms, which would likely manifest themselves by tomorrow, and seek medical treatment if they suspect they have the disease, Lo said.

A unique feature of measles is that a rash usually appears on the head and neck that then spreads to the rest of the body, Lo said.

“All three cases of measles reported this year were imported from abroad,” he said, adding that of other nations in the region, China has reported the most measles cases — about 1,200 — this year.

The prevalence of the disease in Europe seems to be increasing, with Romania bearing the brunt of infections, reporting about 3,800 cases this year, he said.

Vaccinations are the best prevention for the disease, and the centers encourages parents to take their children for a measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine before their first birthday, he said.

About 20 percent of Taiwanese in their 20s and 30s might not have immunity against measles, so they should request an MMR vaccine at least two weeks before they travel to areas where the disease has been reported, he said.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top