The number of measles diseases is increasing - authorities recommend vaccination

The number of measles diseases is increasing - authorities recommend vaccination / Health News

More and more measles diseases in Cologne: Office calls for vaccination

According to the Cologne health authority, the number of measles diseases in the cathedral city continues to rise. Affected are mainly adults, but sometimes also children. The authority calls for the vaccination to be checked.

Increasing number of measles diseases

In recent months, an increasing number of measles cases in Germany has been reported repeatedly. Also in Cologne are increasingly registered diseases - especially in adults, but also in children. As reported by the health department of the cathedral city in a communication, the age range "from infants (six months) to the age of senior citizens (62 years)."

In Cologne, more and more measles diseases are registered. The health department of the city calls to check the vaccine protection and if necessary to complete. (Image: Kzenon /

Serious illness

Since the beginning of the year, the health authorities have received 90 confirmed reports (as of 5 June 2018). According to the information, it was nine during the same period last year.

"Measles are extremely contagious and not a harmless childhood disease," said Health Department Dr. Harald Rau.

The disease caused by viruses can lead to significant complications and long-term consequences. Measles usually start with high fever, cough and runny nose.

Within a few days, the characteristic rash forms on the face and behind the ears and spreads over the entire body.

If the symptoms do not diminish after eight days, there is a growing danger of serious complications such as lung and otitis media or infections of the larynx and trachea.

"As the worst consequences of a measles disease, meningitis and encephalitis may occur in rare cases, which may lead to death," writes the Office.

"Unprotected people can be very easily infected if an infected person is in the vicinity," it says in the message.

Measles are contagious just five days before the onset of rash and four days after skin patches have become visible. The pathogens are transmitted via droplets, for example when speaking, coughing and sneezing.

Health experts advise vaccination

A double vaccination provides the best protection against the viral disease. Therefore, according to the Office, it is important that adults now have their own vaccine and that of their children checked by a doctor and completed as needed.

Measles vaccinations are used as combination vaccines, the so-called measles-mumps-rubella vaccinations - often in combination with a chickenpox vaccine today.

There are basically two inoculations required to be fully protected.

In Germany, the measles vaccine is recommended for children from the eleventh month of life, for infants in a daycare from the ninth month.

Due to the unusual frequency of measles cases and the fact that especially adults fall ill, the Cologne health authority advises adults who have not undergone measles disease and are vaccinated only once to have a second vaccination.

"Adults who have not had measles and are not vaccinated or do not know exactly if and how often they are vaccinated should now receive two vaccinations every four weeks," the agency says.

What to do if measles occur?

When the disease has broken out, there is no causal treatment, just a symptom relief and the treatment of comorbidities.

"Community facilities such as schools and day-care facilities may not be visited as long as there is a risk of infection," said the health department.

Anyone who had even a brief contact with a measles sufferer is considered a "contact person". In a school or day-care center, this includes all persons who visit or work there.

In the case of contact, the vaccine protection must always be checked. If this is incomplete, vaccination can prevent the onset of the disease within the first three days after contact.

Contact persons who do not have vaccine coverage or "vaccination" must stay away from the school and the day care center for 14 days. (Ad)