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Mumps - Pictures, Symptoms and Home Remedies of Mumps

An acute infectious disease caused by a specific virus has a prediction for glandular and nervous tissues. Clinically, the disease is recognized by non-suppurative enlargements and tenderness of one or both the parotid glands. Other organs may also be involved. Constitutional symptoms vary, or may be inapparent. The disease occurs throughout the world. Although morbidity rate tends to be high mortality rate is negligible.

The parotid salivary glands, which produce saliva for the mouth, are found toward the back of each cheek, in the area between the ear and jaw. In cases of mumps, these glands typically swell and become painful. People who have mumps may spread the infection to others, even when they do not have any symptoms or their illness is mild.

Agent factor that cause mumps:

The causative agent is Myxovirus parotiditis (RNA virus of the myxovirus family). The virus can be grown readily in chick embryo or tissue culture. There is only one serotype. The virus can be isolated from the saliva or from swabs taken from the surface of Stenson"s duct . Virus has also been found in the blood, urine, human milk and on occasion in the CSF.

Most people contract mumps during childhood and seldom have it but once.

Mode of transmission:

The disease is spread mainly by direct contact with saliva, droplet infection and after direct contact with infected person. It can be passed to others through sneezing, coughing, or even laughing . The virus enters the body through the airways, then passes around the body in the bloodstream.

Incubation period:

There is an incubation period of 10-25 days between infection and the appearance of symptoms.

Symptoms of mumps:

Mumps is generalized virus infection. In 30-40 percent of cases mumps infection is clinically non apparent. In clinically apparent cases, it is characterized by pain and swelling in either one or both the parotid glands but may also involve the sublingual and submandibular glands. Often the child complains of 'ear ache' on the affected side prior to the onset of swelling. There may be pain and stiffness on opening the mouth before the swelling of the gland is evident. Mumps may also affect the testes, pancreas, CNS, ovaries, prostate etc. In males after puberty, about one in four develops swelling and tenderness in a testicle. This can be very painful in rare cases, it can affect both testicles and very rarely leads to infertility.

In severe cases, there may be fever, headache, difficulty in swallowing, and other constitutional symptoms which may last for 3-5 days. The swelling subsides slowly over 1- 2 weeks.

Complications:- Though frequent are not serious. Although the swollen parotid glands and high temperature caused by mumps may be unpleasant, the most serious repercussions involve possible infection of other organs. These include orchitis, ovaritis, pancreatitis, minigo-encephalitis and myocarditis. Bilateral orchitis is rare and the assumption that mumps orchitis may lead to sterility is ill-founded.

Diagnosis of Mumps:-

Mumps can be diagnosed by a blood test or culture. Diagnosis is usually based on the swelling of the salivary glands in both cheeks (the parotid glands). Various laboratory tests may help with the diagnosis but are usually unnecessary.

The diagnosis of mumps is usually suspected based on clinical manifestations, in particular the presence of parotitis.

Mumps virus can be isolated from clinical specimens, including saliva, urine, and cerebrospinal fluid. If virus isolation is attempted, the specimen should be collected within the first 5 days of illness.

Treatment of mumps:-

No specific treatment is available for mumps . The treatment of mumps requires over-the-counter pain relievers for swelling and fever . . Because mumps is caused by a virus, it cannot be treated with antibiotics pain relievers for swelling and fever can be taken. The child should be kept well hydrated, so encourage the child to drink liquids

Persons with mumps should drink plenty of fluids, get bed rest, and control the fever. The diet should be light.


The control of mumps is difficult because the disease is infectious before a diagnosis can be made. The long and variable incubation period and the occurrence of sub clinical cases make the control of spread difficult. However cases should be isolated till the clinical manifestations subside. Steps should be taken to disinfect the articles used by the patient. Contacts should be kept under surveillance.

For prevention, the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine should be given to children. It is generally given at age 15 months, but may be given to adolescents and adults as well.

Home remedies for mumps:-

  • People recover from mumps with rest and care at home.
  • A paste made with dry ginger powder and water is applied on the visibly swollen parts.
  • You can use nonaspirin fever medications such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen to bring down a fever.
  • You can also soothe your child's swollen parotid glands with either warm or cold packs. Be sure to place a light towel between the jaw and the ice pack or heat pack to protect the skin. Remove after 20 minutes.
  • Try soft foods that do not require chewing. Drink plenty of fluids and eat properly. The diet should be light.
  • Take lobelia and valerian to help relax.
  • The seeds of asparagus are valuable in mumps. These seeds, combined with an equal proportion of fenugreek (methi) seeds, should be ground together to the consistency of a paste. This paste can be applied over the swellings.
  • The leaves of margosa tree, combined with turmeric (haldi) should be made into a paste and applied externally over the affected parts.
  • The patient should be given fruit juices diluted with warm water.
  • In case of difficulty in opening the mouth fluid may be given through a straw and soup and liquid food should be preferred.
  • Avoid acid liquids such as lemonade, orange juice, or ginger and spices because they stimulate salivation and increase pain.

When to call a doctor?

  • If there is any uncertainty about child's illness.
  • If there are convulsions, stiffness of the neck, severe headache.
  • If child has difficulty in hearing.
  • If child has vision problem.
  • If the patient has abdominal pains or begins vomiting.
  • If there is too much of weakness or lethargy.

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