Dear Campus Community,

I am writing to alert the campus about a widespread outbreak of mumps at Temple University in Philadelphia. Mumps is a contagious viral illness which spreads rapidly among individuals living in close quarters such as college dormitories. Symptoms include fever, headache, and body aches followed by swelling of the salivary glands. The illness is usually self-limited, but complications can occur. For more information about mumps, see the CDC website.

If you think you have the mumps or have been in close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with mumps, please contact the Health Center. MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccination is the most effective way to prevent mumps. Although the vaccine is one of the required vaccines at Lafayette College, many students that have been vaccinated have contracted the illness because immunity wanes over time.

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recently recommended a third dose of the vaccine for persons previously immunized with 2 doses who are at increased risk of acquiring mumps because of an outbreak. The vaccine is available at the Health Center.

Although we have not had any confirmed cases at Lafayette, other institutions have been impacted in the region.  We strongly recommend that students receive a booster dose of MMR if they have spent time with other students at increased risk due to the outbreak in Philadelphia.


Jeffrey Goldstein, MD FACEP
Director of Health Services