Measles is an acute illness caused by morbillivirus. The disease is transmitted via airborne respiratory droplets, or by direct contact with nasal and throat secretions of infected individuals.
The main symptoms are fever, rash, cough, running nose and eye infection, appearing after an incubation period of 10 to 12 days. Complications are possible, including pulmonary infection, brain infection and secondary bacterial infections. Only the latter require treatment, by the use of antibiotics.
The disease is preventable by a vaccine providing lifelong immunity to most recipients.
Read more about measles in the factsheet for health professionals and in the factsheet for general public.
Get the surveillance data on measles from EU and EEA countries through the Surveillance Atlas of Infectious Diseases.