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Question and Answer

1 What is the causative organism of mumps infections?

An intermediate-sized paramyxovirus.

2 The infection can also affect dogs, cats and other mammals. True or false?

False. Humans are the only known hosts.

3 What is the average incubation period for mumps?

18 days

4 What age groups are more commonly affected?

Usually children and young adults ­ mumps is uncommon before the age of two years.

5 Parotid gland enlargement is a common feature of mumps. Unlike other parotid gland infections this is always bilateral in mumps. True or false?

False. The swelling can be either bilateral or unilateral.

6 What are the recognised complications of mumps?

Meningitis (5 per cent), epididymo-orchitis, pancreatitis, oophoritis, myocarditis, mastitis, hepatitis, sensorineural hearing loss and polyarthritis.

7 What is the effect of mumps in early pregnancy?

Mumps in the first trimester can lead to miscarriage in 27 per cent of cases.

8 How is mumps treated?

Treatment is symptomatic, including analgesia, nutrition and mouth care.

The role of steroids in orchitis remains controversial.

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