Spring + Fall 2017 – several cases of Mumps have been diagnosed on several college campuses in Washington, D.C.  Please alert the health + wellness center with any of the following symptoms:

Signs & Symptoms

Mumps is best known for the puffy cheeks and swollen jaw that it causes. This is a result of swollen salivary glands.The most common symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches
  • Tiredness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Swollen and tender salivary glands under the ears on one or both sides (parotitis)

Symptoms typically appear 16-18 days after infection, but this period can range from 12-25 days after infection.

Some people who get mumps have very mild or no symptoms, and often they do not know they have the disease.

Most people with mumps recover completely in a few weeks.

For more information please visit the CDC.


Mumps is a contagious disease caused by a virus. It spreads through saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose, or throat.

An infected person can spread the virus by

  • coughing, sneezing, or talking,
  • sharing items, such as cups or eating utensils, with others, and
  • touching objects or surfaces with unwashed hands that are then touched by others.

Mumps likely spreads before the salivary glands begin to swell and up to five days after the swelling begins.

For information about how to prevent mumps from spreading, see Outbreak-Related Questions and Answers for Patients.


Mumps is usually a self-limiting illness lasting 1-2 weeks, but can occasionally cause complications, especially in adults.

Complications include:

  • inflammation of the testicles (orchitis) in males who have reached puberty; rarely does this lead to fertility problems
  • inflammation of the brain (encephalitis)
  • inflammation of the tissue covering the brain and spinal cord (meningitis)
  • inflammation of the ovaries (oophoritis) and/or breast tissue (mastitis)
  • deafness


  • Mumps can be prevented with MMR vaccine. This protects against three diseases: measles, mumps, and rubella.
  • CDC recommends children get two doses of MMR vaccine, starting with the first dose at 12 through 15 months of age, and the second dose at 4 through 6 years of age. Teens and adults also should also be up to date on their MMR vaccine.
  • DC Immunization laws require all college students under the age of 26 to be up to date with the MMR vaccine.
  • Here’s what everyone should know about the MMR Vaccine.

Are you up to date with your vaccinations?  If you need vaccinations or want to check your immunization status, please contact the Health and Wellness Center.

If you currently have the symptoms of Mumps or are concerned that you have come in close contact with someone who was diagnosed with Mumps, please come to the Health Center or urgent care/hospital nearest to you to be evaluated.