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2014: Have The Measles Made a Comeback?

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When you hear stories about the measles, up until this year, it was probably in the recollection of a childhood memory told by your parents or grandparents.

However, 2014 brought the reality of the measles back to North America when the highly contagious disease seemingly started popping up without warning—from one-off cases being transported back to North America via travelers abroad to the worst outbreak of 2014 so far: a whopping 375 reported cases in the Canadian province of British Columbia.

Here are nine itchy realties that you should know about this highly contagious respiratory disease…

1. What Causes Measles?

Measles is a respiratory condition passed from person to person via the measles virus. It’s most common and telltale symptom is a rash that covers the entire body. While most healthy individuals can fight off and recover from measles, the World Health Organization estimates that the infection kills approximately one and 3 individuals per 1,000 cases each year.

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