Health officials have warned people who visited a Perth suburban cinema complex last week to be on the alert for symptoms of measles.
The WA Health Department said this afternoon that movie-goers who were at Garden City Hoyts Cinema Complex in Booragoon about midday last Wednesday may have been exposed to the highly infectious disease.
The warning comes after a West Australian was found to be infected with measles after a holiday in Indonesia.
Acting director of communicable disease control Paul Effler said measles was highly contagious among people who were not fully immunised and spread through coughing and sneezing.
“Symptoms can include fever, tiredness, runny nose, cough and sore red eyes which usually last for several days before a red, blotchy rash appears,” he said.
“Complications can range from an ear infection and diarrhoea to pneumonia or swelling of the brain.”
Dr Effler said that people aged up to 48 years who had not received two doses of measles vaccine were particularly susceptible to measles, while those born before 1966 were usually immune because they had measles during childhood.
“The local public health units are contacting people identified to have had contact with the infected person and considered most at risk,” Dr Effler said.
“However, other people may have been exposed to the virus elsewhere in Perth such as the Garden City Complex in Booragoon and should also be alert for symptoms.
“Anyone who develops measles symptoms should seek medical attention, but it is important that they phone ahead first to ensure they don’t share the waiting area with other patients and risk infecting them.”
Susceptible people who might have been exposed to measles while visiting Hoyts in Booragoon could expect symptoms to appear any time from now until about January 26.