DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Mumps. An man showing swelling of the parotid salivary gland in front of the ear. This is a symptom of mumps or infectious parotitis, a viral infection usually affecting children. Symptoms appear 2-3 weeks after exposure. Fever, headache and vomiting may precede the typical swelling of the parotid glands. One gland may swell before the other and in some cases only one is affected. The patient is infectious until the swelling has disappeared. Infection may spread to the brain causing meningitis, and in males after puberty the testicles may become inflamed. Occasionally this may lead to sterility. Children in the UK are vaccinated against mumps in their second year.
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