Officials: 4 confirmed cases of mumps in King County, 5 others probable

SEATTLE -- Health officials have confirmed four cases of the mumps in the Seattle area with another five probable cases.

Public Health Seattle & King County said Wednesday that eight of the nine patients are children ages 8-17 with one adult case, a 23 year old. Five of them are linked through the same family in Auburn.

Mumps can cause fever, headache, and swelling of the cheeks and jaw. Most people recover in a few weeks but in rare cases, mumps can lead to complications that may require hospitalization.

King County Health Officer Dr. Jeff Duchin says to reduce the risk, everyone should be fully vaccinated. He also says people who develop symptoms of mumps should see a health care provider.

“Vaccination provides very good protection, but not 100%. MMR vaccine is on average 85% protective for mumps after two doses,” said Dr. Jeff Duchin, Health Officer for Public Health – Seattle & King County. “85% protection is very good and vaccination is the most important step to protect children and adults against mumps, which can be a painful experience, and its uncommon serious complications including meningitis and, inflammation of the brain, testes, ovaries, and other organs.”

State health officials say seven cases of mumps were confirmed in Washington state last year.