Anchorage, Alaska (KINY) State officials reported 13 cases of mumps in Anchorage in the first outbreak of the viral infection in more than 20 years.
Authorities said they believe a traveler brought the virus to Anchorage. The current outbreak includes people between the ages of 14 and 58. The announcement came in a joint news release from the Alaska Department of Health and the City of Anchorage. The 13 cases were diagnosed as of September 25.
Mumps is a viral infection that primarily affects the salivary glands. It is spread by "coughing, sneezing, talking, and sharing cups or utensils," local health officials said. Symptoms commonly include swelling of the cheeks and jaw, fever, pain in and around the ears, headache, body ache and testicular swelling. State health officials urge residents to call their health care provider if they have any symptoms of the illness.