Podcast # 424: Hunting for Measles - The Emergency Medical Minute

Podcast # 424: Hunting for Measles

Author: Mike Hunt, MD

Educational Pearls:

  • Measles is highly contagious and successfully infects 90% of those at risk exposed to the virus.
  • 10 day prodrome where patients are asymptomatic.
  • 3 day period of characteristic cough, coryza, conjunctivitis, fever and Koplick spots with a maculopapular rash that moves from head through trunk
  • Infection risk extends three to four days after the onset of rash but also three to four days prior to onset. ¬†Have fun with that.
  • A potential exposure, say in an emergency department waiting room, needs review of any exposed patient’s immunization history to contain spread


Moss WJ. Measles. Lancet. 2017 Dec 2;390(10111):2490-2502. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(17)31463-0. Epub 2017 Jun 30. Review. PubMed PMID: 28673424.

Bester JC. Measles and Measles Vaccination: A Review. JAMA Pediatr. 2016 Dec 1;170(12):1209-1215. doi: 10.1001/jamapediatrics.2016.1787. Review. PubMed PMID: 27695849.

Summarized by Travis Barlock, MS4 | Edited by Erik Verzemnieks, MD

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