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Measles is an infection of the respiratory system caused by a virus. It is a highly contagious virus found throughout the world. People get measles disease by breathing in the measles virus which is spread when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks. You can get measles just by being in the same room with an infected person. It is spread through respiration (contact with fluids from an infected person's nose and mouth, either directly or through aerosol transmission).

Symptoms of measles include high fever, rash, runny nose, watery eyes, coughing, diarrhea, and earache. The average time between exposure to the measles virus and the development of symptoms is usually from 10 to 14 days.