What Are Measles

Measles is a respiratory disease caused by a virus. It is also called rubeola.

Signs and Symptoms

1st Sign – high fever, which begins about 10 to 12 days after exposure to the virus that can last 4-7 days.

What can you expect?

  • runny nose and cough
  • red and watery eyes
  • small white spots with bluish-white center inside the cheeks (Koplik’s spots)

After Several Days – blotchy rash erupts on the face and upper neck

After another three days – the rash spreads, eventually reaching the hands and feet and lasts for 5-6 days, and then fades. On average, the rash occurs 14 days after exposure to the virus (within a range of 7-18 days)


The highly contagious virus is spread by:

  • Sneezing and Coughing
  • Close personal contact or direct contact with infected nasal or throat secretions

The virus remains active and contagious in the air or on infected surfaces for up to 2 hours. It can be transmitted by an infected person from 4 days prior to the onset of the rash to four days after the rash erupts.

Measles is a disease of humans; measles virus is not spread by any other animal species.


  • pneumonia
  • encephalitis
  • miscarriage
  • ear infections
  • diarrhea
  • premature birth


To prevent measles, children (and some adults) should be vaccinated with the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine. 2 doses of this vaccine are needed for complete protection.

If these signs and symptoms exist consult a Doctor.

AVEGA Medical Bulletin
AVEGA Managed Care, Inc.

What are Measles

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