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Mumps | What we need to know

Mumps is a viral disease caused by paramyxovirus. The virus is spread by droplets of the patient's saliva - during coughing and sneezing, as well as by contact with infected surfaces. The virus is transmitted by direct contact with an infected person - by kissing or using personal items.

The virus affects the mumps (parotid) salivary glands. Unvaccinated people are at high risk of infection. In vaccinated persons, the disease is characterized by a relatively moderate course and fewer complications.


The incubation period of the disease is about 2-3 weeks, after which a clinical picture develops, the beginning of which symptoms are often similar to a viral infection:

  • Fever
  • headache
  • muscle pain
  • Ingratitude
  • common weakness

Swelling of the salivary glands usually appears after a few days:

  • unilaterally or on both sides
  • The area of ​​the gland is painful to the touch
  • The inflammatory process rarely affects the sublingual gland

When to see a doctor?

The causative agent of the disease spreads very easily, so consult a doctor at the first symptoms.

  • A rise in temperature of 39°C and above
  • Prevention of food poisoning
  • Disorientation or fainting
  • stomach-ache
  • Pain and swelling of the testicles


Complications of mumps are more likely in unvaccinated individuals. At this time it is noted:

  • Orchitis – swelling and inflammation of the testicles, accompanied by severe pain. Later, the testicles may decrease in size and even become the cause of infertility.
  • Oophoritis – inflammation of the ovaries, causes pain and discomfort in the lower abdomen. As a rule, it is not associated with serious damage to the ovaries and infertility.
  • Encephalitis – inflammation of the brain, which can cause swelling of the brain, loss of consciousness, seizures and other serious injuries.
  • Meningitis - inflammation of the membranes of the brain - causes inflammation of the soft membrane of the brain, swelling, obstruction of the movement of head-spinal fluid, which is clinically manifested by neck stiffness, vomiting, fever. requires immediate treatment.
  • Hearing loss - mainly during the course of the disease, or sometimes later, hearing changes occur.
  • Pancreatitis - inflammation of the pancreas - develops discomfort and pain in the upper abdomen, nausea-vomiting, fever.
  • Termination of pregnancy – the risk is especially high when infected during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.


Prevention is possible only by vaccination.


Mumps serology is needed to assess immune status both during infection and post-vaccination. Quantitative and qualitative study of IgG antibodies is important to assess the immune status.

For the determination of antibodies in the acute period, the research material is taken within 7 days after the clinical manifestation of the disease.

To assess the immune status after recovery, it is recommended to take research material 7-10 days after the end of the acute period.

Interpretation of results

Within 3-7 days of the onset of the acute period of mumps, both IgM (acute period) and IgG (chronic, post-recovery) antibodies are tested.

A simultaneous study of IgM and IgG antibodies is carried out during the active phase of the disease, after vaccination or during the recovery stage.

According to the quantitative index of antibodies, non-reactive, moderate and hyperreactive forms of the disease are distinguished.

Non-reactive and moderate levels of both IgM and IgG antibodies characterize the initial, acute stage of the disease, which increases reactively in the following weeks.

A few weeks or months after the transfer of the disease, a low titer of IgG can be explained by the non-acute course of the disease, and after years, a low level of IgM is due to a gradual decrease in its number.

The determination of IgG antibodies is useful for assessing the immune status after disease transfer or vaccination. A positive titer of class G antibodies indicates solid immunization against the disease. In the absence of class G antibodies, it is likely that either the disease was not transmitted to the patient, or improper immunization occurred after vaccination. In case of ambiguous indicators (IgG low and unclear titer), repeated research is necessary.

The mumps antibody test is a quantitative test. According to the detected amount of IgG, the qualitative index is determined (non-reactive, moderate or hyperreactive), together with the interpretation of the general condition of the immune status.




For laboratory diagnostics of mumps and assessment of immune status, Laboratory "SynevoOffers Then Studies:


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