One case of measles was reported during 2006. The case was confirmed by both viral culture and a positive IgM serologic test for measles. The case-patient was a 7-month-old infant adopted from Africa and residing in the metropolitan area. The child had arrived in the United States 9 days prior to rash onset and was therefore considered an international importation. The child was too young to have been vaccinated.
No secondary cases were identified despite numerous exposures just prior to and during the infant’s measles prodrome. Exposure notification and follow-up were conducted at a large middle school and at the child’s primary care clinic. The lack of measles transmission indicates a highly protected population.
This was the first case of measles reported in Minnesota since 2002, when two unrelated cases occurred, a 29-year-old female visiting from the Ukraine, and an 8-month-old infant returning from an extended stay in the Philippines. Neither of these cases resulted in secondary transmission.
Although rare in Minnesota and the United States, measles continues to cause significant morbidity and mortality worldwide. Imported cases of measles can result in outbreaks, particularly in unvaccinated population groups; therefore, continued vigilance with regard to disease surveillance and immunization is essential to prevent measles resurgence.
Suspect measles cases should be reported to MDH immediately. Blood specimens for IgM serologic testing should be drawn at least 72 hours after rash onset. Testing for measles IgM provides timely results; however, due to low incidence, the positive predictive value is not optimal. Multiple tests (including acute and convalescent measles IgG, and viral culture) are therefore strongly recommended. Testing for both measles and rubella is routinely recommended for individuals presenting with acute generalized rash and fever. Blood specimens for acute and convalescent IgG serology should be drawn within 4 days of rash onset and again 3 to 5 weeks later, and tested as paired sera. Specimens for viral culture (urine, nasopharyngeal swabs, or throat swabs) should be collected as soon as possible within 10 days of rash onset.
- Note: For up to date information see: Measles
- Go to full issue: Annual Summary of Communicable Diseases Reported to the Minnesota Department of Health, 2006