There have been 626 cases of measles reported in the United States this year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s 71 more than the agency reported last week in its weekly update.
Just four months into the year, the number of cases is only 42 away from surpassing the record of 667 cases in 2014, the highest number since the illness was declared eliminated in the United States in 2000. “In the coming weeks, 2019 confirmed case numbers will likely surpass 2014 levels,” the agency said on its website Monday.
Complications, which are more likely in patients younger than 5 and older than 20, can include ear infections with permanent hearing loss, diarrhea, pneumonia and swelling of the brain. Pregnant women who get measles are at risk of premature delivery and having a low-birth-weight baby.
One or two out of every 1,000 people who get measles will die from the disease, according to the CDC, although there has not been a death from the illness in the United States since 2015.