From the Mercury News:
"Federal health authorities said Wednesday that they are rushing 25,000 doses of mumps vaccine to the Midwest to control the largest mumps outbreak in 20 years.
Since the first cases were detected in Iowa in December, mumps has infected 1,165 people in at least eight Midwestern states, said Dr. Julie Gerberding, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
``We're not going to be surprised to see more cases in more states,'' she said at a news conference in Atlanta.
Officials still are collecting data from the other states, but many of the people in Iowa who have contracted mumps were 17 to 24 years old.
The relative youth of those infected could explain why there have been no deaths so far, Gerberding said. Still, 20 people have been hospitalized for more serious conditions that developed from their mumps infections, including meningitis.
Gerberding said a program has begun in the affected areas to vaccinate vulnerable populations, particularly college-age students and health care workers.
Mumps is a virus that can be spread by close contact through mucus or coughs and sneezes. The disease generally causes fever, headaches and tiredness, with a special tendency to puff up the saliva glands. Most people get over mumps in about 10 days. About 20 percent of people who catch mumps can have no symptoms.
Mumps usually affects about 265 people a year in the United States.
Since a vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella became available in 1967, nearly everyone has gotten the shot.
Jane Seward, acting deputy director of the CDC's division of viral diseases, said the latest outbreak might have been sparked by someone coming from overseas.
Health officials said the mumps strain is the same as one circulating in the United Kingdom, which has seen 100,000 cases since 2004."
Jane Seward, you are wrong!! The latest outbreak started in Iowa this winter, and the UK mumps strain has to have been hanging out in the US since at least 2004. What set it off? Probably not another one of the hundreds of British mumps carriers who must visit this country on a monthly basis... Look for novel vectors you dumb ass --- this thing is being carried through college kids visiting eachother, so you have to find out what Iowa university this started in, and what makes the college unique in whatever way that could jumpstart an outbreak.
I am seriously so pissed at these lazy scientists throwing out platitidudes instead of a reasoned, thoughtful discussion. Don't you care about your field, Dr. Seward? Don't you want to actually know how this thing got started? Or are you just an administration power-suit corporate hack who just doesn't know shit? I'm calling you out, explain what you think happened here Dr. Seward.
Eh, I've called out "experts" on this blog before and not one has ever come to defend themselves. It's as if no one searches for their own names on blog listings or something...
Thursday, April 20, 2006
From the Mercury News: