Allegheny County warns about another case of measles

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Allegheny County, which saw no cases of the measles since 2009 and only four in the past decade, on Thursday recorded its second case this year of the highly contagious disease, the Health Department said.

"It does seem to be on the uptick," director Karen Hacker said, though she added that Allegheny County has seen fewer cases than other parts of the country, where the disease remains rare thanks to vaccination programs.

The Health Department is currently investigating how the person -- whose name is not being released and who Dr. Hacker said was vaccinated against measles -- contracted the illness.

Health officials do not believe there is a connection to the case reported in February, when a University of Pittsburgh graduate student, who had also received the proper vaccination, contracted measles while visiting New York.

As the Health Department did three months ago, officials are advising people who may have come in contact with the person to be alert for symptoms. Dr. Hacker said they take these incidents seriously.

"Even one case is something that we do everything we can," she said.

People who were at the following locations April 30 at specific times may have been exposed:

• Blair Auto Sales at 132 Coxcomb Hill, New Kensington, from noon to 6 p.m.

• Tomasino's Restaurant at 260 Little Deer Creek Road in Indiana Township from 4 to 9 p.m.

• Advance Auto Parts at 2407 Freeport Road in Harmar from 6 to 9 p.m.

Most people are not at risk because they have been immunized or have had measles. But some people are susceptible, including anyone born since 1957 who has not had two doses of the mumps-measles-rubella vaccine, including infants, people vaccinated with the inactivated vaccine used from 1963 to 1967, those who refused vaccination and people whose immune systems are compromised.

People who believe they have measles symptoms -- a runny nose, red and watery eyes, cough and a high fever and a raised, red rash -- should call their primary care provider, but should not go directly to the medical facility to avoid exposing others, the Health Department said.


Kaitlynn Riely: kriely@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1707. First Published May 8, 2014 4:35 PM

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