An outbreak of mumps in a middle school (grades 6 to 8) in Ohio during 1981 was investigated to describe the clinical findings, health impact, and costs. Individuals with clinical mumps in the middle school and in family members were questioned concerning symptoms, complications, hospitalizations, school days absent, and parental work days missed. There were 62 cases of clinical mumps in the middle school and 13 cases among family members. Parotitis lasted an average of 7.4 days and fever (if present) lasted an average of 2.5 days with a mean temperature of 38.6°C (101.4°F). The duration of parotitis and fever increased with age. Complications included encephalitis, aseptic meningitis, orchitis, oophoritis, mastitis, and pancreatitis. Visits to physicians were made by 62.7% (47/75) of the individuals with mumps for a total of 63 visits, and two patients were hospitalized for a total of six days. Persons who attended middle school missed an average of 4.9 days of school. The estimated direct and indirect costs associated with this outbreak were $2,460 and $1,353, respectively, or $51 per case. States lacking mumps immunization requirements experienced a three-times greater incidence of mumps in 1982 than States that required all school pupils to be immunized. We recommend that all States institute compulsory mumps school immunization laws for all school children.

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