What is the best treatment for measles?


Quick Answer

According to Mayo Clinic, there is no cure for the measles once the infection becomes established. However, if a person has been exposed to the virus, administering a post-exposure vaccine within 72 hours often prevents the disease from becoming established, and if the disease does develop, the vaccine reduces the severity and length of the symptoms.

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Full Answer

Another option, especially for infants and people with weakened immune systems, is injection of immune serum globulin, which consists of antibodies that help fight off the disease, according to Mayo Clinic. This has proven effective in halting the development of the disease and reducing severity of the symptoms if the disease does develop. However, the serum must be administered within six days after coming in contact with the disease.

People who develop measles usually get better with time, according to the WebMD. Some options to aid in recovery include taking medicine to reduce the fever as well as getting plenty of rest and drinking plenty of fluids. Patients with the measles are encouraged to stay away from others to avoid spreading the illness. If a person has symptoms, WebMD recommends calling ahead to inform one's doctor of the symptoms before actually visiting the clinic. There, the doctor may perform blood tests or a viral culture to confirm a diagnosis of measles.

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