Mumps - Symptoms

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What are the signs and symptoms of mumps in children and adults?

Nonspecific symptoms of low-grade fever, headache, muscle aches (myalgia), reduced appetite, and malaise occur during the first 48 hours of mumps infection. Parotid gland swelling characteristically is present on day three of illness. (The parotid gland is a salivary gland located anterior to the ear and above the angle of the jaw -- imagine a large set of sideburns.) The parotid gland is swollen and tender to touch, and referred pain to the ear may also occur. Parotid gland swelling may last up to 10 days, and adults generally experience worse symptoms than children. Approximately 95% of individuals who develop symptoms of mumps will experience tender inflammation of their parotid glands.

Interestingly about 15%-20% of mumps cases have no clinical evidence of infection, and 50% of patients will have only nonspecific respiratory symptoms and not the characteristic description above. Adults are more likely to experience such a subclinical or respiratory-only constellation of symptoms while children between 2-9 years of age are more likely to experience the classic presentation of mumps with parotid gland swelling.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: Kelly, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 16

I am a 44 yr. old female who about 8 days ago started feeling jaw pain with swelling, ear ache on left side and fever. I went to my M.D. on the 5th day and was given an antibiotic. Three days later I was feeling even worse. Swollen face, no energy at all, neck pain, feeling feverish (even though I don't have a fever), and swollen, puffy eyes. The list is endless, today I gave blood to find out if it is the mumps. I was given my vaccination as a child and recently was given the MMR vaccination, and still I may have the mumps, I thought this virus was gone long ago. But I've been wrong before.

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Comment from: DS, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: April 11

I got mumps at the age of 13 and right now am 23. Before I got mumps my face was small and cute. But I got mumps and my face is bigger now. That time I was advised to take some leaves treatment. But I am not sure why face is still bigger. It really hurts lot... sometimes all used to tell me, my face is so bigger.

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