Cheerleaders may have been exposed to Mumps at national competition in Dallas

Casey Dawson
March 9, 2018

Thousands of cheerleaders from 39 states and nine countries were in Dallas Feb. 23-25, for the National Cheerleaders Association All-Star National Championship.

The Texas Department of State Health Services is alerting the public anyone at the competition from February 23 to February 25 at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas should be aware of the exposure. Symptoms include a swollen face, fever, aches, and loss of appetite.

"Many people do not have any symptoms", though they can still spread the virus, the Texas DSHS said.

It typically takes about 14 to 18 days after exposure for symptoms to appear, but it can take as long as 25 days.

Mumps is an infection from a virus that can be spread through the air or direct contact, similar to the flu.

Mumps is a contagious viral illness. Infected people without symptoms of mumps may still be able to transmit the virus.

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Most children receive a measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR) shot at 12 to 15 months and another dose a few years later - sometime between age 4 and 6, according to the Texas DSHS. However, pregnant women or people who are immunocompromised should not receive the MMR vaccine.

The mumps vaccine was created in 1967 and was mostly eradicated until a trend arose in Texas in 2016 with 191 cases reported, according to TDSHS.

Officials say the two doses of the vaccine is about 88 percent effective in protecting patients, but efficacy can wane over time.

The Texas DHS says vaccines offer the "best protection", but vaccinated individuals can still become infected.

Moffatt said she received a one-page information email from Health Canada about the mumps.

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