The Maricopa County Department of Public Health on Saturday confirmed a measles case involving an international visitor.
County officials said they are investigating at a time when measles cases are rising across the United States and overseas.
Measles is a highly contagious disease that can spread through the air, and those who are unvaccinated are at the highest risk of developing the disease if exposed, according to a department release.
“Measles is both highly infectious and completely preventable,” Dr. Nick Staab, assistant medical director for MCDPH, said.
“We encourage residents to stay up-to-date on their vaccines and watch for symptoms of measles, especially if you are high risk or unvaccinated.”
The measles virus can survive in the air for several hours and may be transmitted to unvaccinated individuals even after the infected person has left a room.
“Almost every person exposed to measles will get sick if they have not been vaccinated with the measles, mumps, rubella vaccine or had the disease in the past,” the release stated.
Measles usually begins with a high fever, cough, runny nose and red or watery eyes. A rash usually appears three to five days later. The rash often begins on the forehead and spreads downward to other parts of the body, according to health officials.
For more on measles: MCDPH measles.
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