Healthy Living

What Are the Complications of Mumps?

Mumps

What Are the Complications of Mumps?

Key Takeaways

Mumps is a contagious illness caused by a virus. It can be passed through direct contact from one person to another. There are numerous problems that come along with mumps. They can be worrying, but they aren’t very serious and often improve as the illness passes. Common complications include:

Swollen Testicles

Inflammation of the testicle also referred to as orchitis can really be devastating. Research has confirmed that orchitis affects 1 in every 4 men who contract mumps after puberty. The inflammation or swelling is often sudden and attacks only one testicle. The testicle might also feel warm or tender. Swelling of the testicle usually occurs four to seven days after the inflammation of the salivary glands. Occasionally, the swelling might occur up to 6 weeks after the inflammation of the parotid glands.

Swelling of the testicle usually occurs four to seven days after the inflammation of the salivary glands. Occasionally, the swelling might occur up to 6 weeks after the inflammation of the parotid glands.

Swollen Ovaries

One in every twenty women who contract mumps after puberty may experience swelling of their ovaries. They may experience:

  • Being sick
  • Lower abdominal pains
  • High body temperature

These symptoms often disappear once the immune system overcomes the underlying mumps disease.

Viral Meningitis

This condition can develop if the mumps infection spreads towards the external protective layer of the brain. This happens in about seven cases of mumps. Viral meningitis isn’t as serious as bacterial meningitis, which is life-threatening. Viral meningitis causes flu-like symptoms and the chances of serious complications are minimal. Headaches, hypersensitivity to light, and neck stiffness are the commonest symptoms of viral meningitis. They usually vanish within two weeks.

Pancreatitis

A few cases of mumps result in short-term swelling of the pancreas also known as acute pancreatitis. The commonest symptom is a sudden pain at the center of your abdomen. Other symptoms associated with this condition include:

  • Tenderness of the abdomen
  • Feeling of being sick
  • High body temperature
  • Diarrhea
  • Skin yellowing or jaundice
  • Loss of appetite

Though pancreatitis linked to mumps is normally mild, you might be admitted to the hospital so that your bodily functions can be supported until your pancreas attains full recovery.

Rare Complications Associated with Mumps

Rare but serious complications caused by mumps include encephalitis, which refers to an infection of the brain itself. This has been proven to affect one person in every 1,000 people who have viral meningitis. Encephalitis is a fatal condition that necessitates admission to an intensive care unit (ICU). Some people suffering from mumps might develop temporary hearing loss; however, permanent hearing loss is very rare. It is estimated that this occurs in one out of 20,000 mumps cases.

Mumps and Pregnancy

Sometimes, mumps can lead to a miscarriage, especially in women who haven’t had MMR immunizations before. Although this is rare, it’s important that precaution is taken to avoid direct contact with infected people or contaminated respiratory secretions.

Who’s at risk of contracting mumps?

People who have never had MMR vaccinations or previous infections can develop mumps. While vaccination against mumps is the safest way to protect the body against infection, persons who have been vaccinated might sometimes develop the condition.

Presently, two MMR vaccine doses are recommended. Most people who have had the complete vaccination doses are highly protected against the disease. For those individuals who have received a single dose of mumps vaccine, their protection rate is about 80%.

People who were born in the 1970s may not have received vaccinations against mumps. See your doctor for a confirmed examination. Even though you could have taken it, an additional vaccination won’t harm.