Clemson University students, visitors warned after confirmed mumps case

Health officials are warning anyone who visited or was around Clemson University near the end of November to be on alert after a case of mumps was connected to campus. According to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), anyone who visited between Nov. 21 and 29 may have been exposed to the virus.

The timeframe includes when the Tigers played host to the South Carolina Gamecocks on Nov. 24 in a 56-35 home victory for Clemson. Memorial Stadium can hold over 80,000 fans.

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The DHEC did not identify who the patient was, nor if it was an enrolled student or staff member. The university’s students are required to show proof of the MMR vaccination, which helps protect against measles, mumps and rubella before enrollment, although according to the Anderson Independent-Mail, students may be exempt for religious reasons.

Mumps is a contagious viral disease that typically starts with a fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness and loss of appetite followed by swollen salivary glands. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the virus is best known for causing puffy cheeks and swollen jaw, with symptoms typically setting in 16 to 18 days after infection. Most people recover within a few weeks, but severe cases can cause complications in adults, including fertility problems, inflammation of the brain, meningitis and deafness.

Anyone experiencing possible symptoms is encouraged to visit the campus’ medical facility.