Published on August 13, 2019 at 12:15 / Updated on August 13, 2019 at 12:40

It was believed that measles had been eliminated from industrialized countries with vaccination. But with anti-vaccination campaigns on social media, this disease is coming back in a big way.

What is measles?

La rougeole est une maladie extrêmement contagieuse causée par un virus nommé « paramyxovirus ».  La rougeole peut se compliquer rapidement.  Parmi les complications possibles, on retrouve : otite, pneumonie, convulsion fébrile, et même une encéphalite.  Si la maladie survient durant la grossesse, on redoute le travail prématuré, une fausse couche ou un bébé de faible poids.


Measles is a very contagious disease caused by a virus called "paramyxovirus."  Measles can quickly become more complicated.  Some possible complications include: ear infections, pneumonia, febrile seizures, and even encephalitis. If the disease occurs during pregnancy, there is a risk of premature labour, a miscarriage or a baby with a low birthweight.


Measles is transmissible through tiny droplets in the secretions of the nose and throat.  After contact with the virus and even before symptoms begin, it is possible to transmit the virus. The contagious period lasts up to four days after the first signs of the rash.

People at risk of contracting the disease

Kids who attend daycare or school are the most at risk of contracting measles.  Those who have not been vaccinated are also at risk.


There is no antiviral treatment available for the treatment of measles. The fever should be treated with the usual medications. If there are complications due to bacteria (e.g.: otitis media or pneumonia), antibiotics can be administered.


Given that measles is highly contagious, it is important that the person with measles has limited contact with others. Consequently, children must stay home from daycare or school. They will be able to return four days after the first signs of the rash, if their general condition permits.

Preventive measures

The best way to protect against measles is to get vaccinated. Like all other contagious diseases, frequent hand washing reduces the risk of transmission.

For any questions or concerns regarding measles, please do not hesitate to consult a health care professional.

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