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Measels Virus
Mesels virus.jpg
Scientific Classification
Species Type
Measels Virus

Measles is a highly contagious virus of the respiratory system. It begins with a three to four day fever and eventually a unique rash appears all over the body. It was discovered in the 7th century and, at that time, nearly everyone got it. In 1963 the vaccine was finally brought to the United States and the number of cases decreased drastically. There is no antibiotic or medication, yet, that can cure this virus. You can, however,make the symptoms less irritable through all natural treatments. Unlike most viruses, you can get the measles more then once, so it’s best to stay away from people who have it whether or not you’ve gotten it before.


Measles is an easily spread virus also known as the “paramyxo” virus. Direct contact with throat or nasal secretions and with contaminated materials that have the virus on it is the main way of catching it. [1] The virus attaches to the airway linings, spreads, and the end result is the disease. It's a very contagious virus and even if you breathe the same air as someone who has the virus can put you at risk of getting it. Even before symptoms appear it’s possible for the infected person to still spread the virus. It’s important to wait a while before entering a place where an infected person has been because the virus can live in the air for up to 2 hours even after the person is gone. [2] There are many other ways you can get measles besides contact with an infected person, such as, bad eating habits, vitamin A sufficiency, immunodeficiency due to HIV/AIDS, malnutrition, and unhygienic living conditions. [3]


Woman with the Measels Rash

There are many symptoms that can occur when you get this particular virus. The main symptoms are fever, runny nose, coughing, red eyes and a maculopapular or erythematous rash. [4]These are both very unique rashes. The words are a compound word that comes out of the terms macule, meaning spots, and papule, which means bumps. [5]The fever usually last a period of four days and can get up to 104 degrees. Spots inside the mouth, known as Koplik’s spots, are diagnostic for the virus, but aren’t always seen even if the person has measles, because they tend to disappear quickly within a matter of days. The fever, which starts right away, is much different from the rash that comes along with it. The rash starts a couple days after the fever and works its way down the body, from the head, and covers a good majority of the skin. Most of the time it causes itching and discoloration of the skin itself. The skin turns into either a shade of red or dark brown and disappears just before the virus has finished its course. If you think you have symptoms that are like any of the previous ones listed, it is the smartest thing to visit a doctor. However, if you aren’t diagnosed with measels but you start having trouble staying awake, difficulty hearing, a harsh cough, or pain in your ears you should defiantly check in with your doctor again because it’s most likely that you do in fact have the virus, the symptoms just weren’t strong enough for the doctor to diagnose yet. [6]


There are many cures for this particular virus, but there is no particular medicine that can treat this disease. There are a lot of natural cures though, such as keeping the infectious person in a room with subdued light and good ventilation, apply abdominal mudpacks twice a day, frequent intake of orange and lemon juices, and regular administration of warm water enema. To sooth the itching, a water bath filled with lukewarm water and mango leaves will help. Measles can be caught again if you’re exposed to the virus again. A way to prevent getting it again for a year period is to eat eggplant seeds, because its proven to raise your immunity to the virus. [7]There are also herbal cures that are very beneficial. One being garlic and onions, they have a certain ant-infective action that goes against the virus. Also Echinacea is a commonly used anti-infective, in which you’re suppose to give twice a day for three weeks, mixed with water, to the infectious person.[8] All these being good and effective treatments for measles, the most common is to stay in bed, drink a lot of fluids, and take medicine for the headaches and fever. [9]


Measles have been apparent in history for a long time. It has been said that there have been references to measles that are as far back as the 7th century A.D. It was described as worse then small pox in the 10th century, but that later changed. 1963 was the year that a measles vaccine was first licensed to the United States. Before the vaccine had arrived almost everyone had or had already gotten the virus. Approximately three to four million cases were found yearly, resulting in an estimated 450 deaths. Over half the population got it before they turned six, and if not that young they were expected to have it by the age of 15. However, when the vaccine was brought into the United States the cases dropped a drastic 99 percent. [10]For a while measels wasn’t a problem in the Unites States, but between January 1 and April 25, 2008, 64 cases were reported, the most found since the year 2001. The main cause of it re-spreading again was because people would bring it back with them from other countries. By July of the same year a total of 127 cases were reported, making it the largest outbreak since the year 1997. Since then there have been many more cases found, mainly in children whose parents denied them getting vaccinated. Measels will never totally be gone from the world but with the vaccination it prevents a lot of people from ever catching it. [11]

Other respiratory diseases