Mumps differential diagnosis

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1] Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Nate Michalak, B.A.


Mumps must be differentiated from other diseases or pathogens that cause upper respiratory infection, prodromal symptoms, swelling of salivary glands (sialadenitis), particularly parotitis. Etiologic agents that cause similar symptoms include: parainfluenza virus, adenovirus, Epstein-Barr virus, coxsackievirus, influenza A, parvovirus B19, human herpesvirus 6. Non-infectious causes include: salivary calculi, tumor, sarcoid, Sjögren’s syndrome, thiazide drug reaction, iodine sensitivity.

Differentiating mumps from other diseases

Mumps must be differentiated from other diseases or pathogens that cause upper respiratory infection, prodromal symptoms, swelling of salivary glands (sialadenitis), particularly parotitis.[1][2][3]

Infectious etiologies

Non-infectious causes

Differential diagnosis of Mumps Symptoms Signs Diagnosis Additional Findings
Fever Rash Diarrhea Abdominal pain Weight loss Painful lymphadenopathy Hepatosplenomegaly Arthritis Lab Findings
Brucellosis Relative lymphocytosis Night sweats, often with characteristic smell, likened to wet hay
Typhoid fever Decreased hemoglobin Incremental increase in temperature initially and than sustained fever as high as 40°C (104°F)
Malaria Microcytosis,

elevated LDH

"Tertian" fever: paroxysms occur every second day
Tuberculosis Mild normocytic anemiahyponatremia, and


Night sweats, constant fatigue
Lymphoma Increase ESR, increased LDH Night sweats, constant fatigue
Mumps Relative lymphocytosis, serum amylaseelevated Parotidswelling/tenderness
Rheumatoid arthritis ESR and CRP elevated, positive rheumatoid factor Morning stiffness
SLE ESR and CRP elevated, positive ANA Fatigue
HIV Constant fatigue


  1. Davidkin, Irja; Jokinen, Sari; Paananen, Anja; Leinikki, Pauli; Peltola, Heikki (2005). "Etiology of Mumps‐Like Illnesses in Children and Adolescents Vaccinated for Measles, Mumps, and Rubella". The Journal of Infectious Diseases. 191 (5): 719–723. doi:10.1086/427338. ISSN 0022-1899.
  2. Gupta, R. K (2005). "Mumps and the UK epidemic 2005". BMJ. 330 (7500): 1132–1135. doi:10.1136/bmj.330.7500.1132. ISSN 0959-8138.
  3. Mumps. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (May 29, 2015). Accessed March 08, 2016.