The key difference between mumps and parotitis is that mumps is a viral disease caused by the Rubulavirus, which is a member of the paramyxoviridae family, while parotitis is the inflammation of one or two of the parotid glands.
Parotid glands are a major type of salivary gland found in animals, including humans. There are parotid glands on either side of the mouth and in front of both ears. Parotid glands can be inflamed due to several causes, including infections from viruses and bacteria. Mumps is a viral disease that causes swelling and pain in parotid glands. Parotitis is the inflammation of parotid glands. Both parotitis and mumps are contagious diseases.
What is Mumps?
Mumps is a highly contagious viral disease in humans. The virus Mumps orthorubulavirus is the causative agent of mumps. Specific and non-specific fever, headache, malaise, muscle pain, and loss of appetite are the initial symptoms of mumps. These symptoms are normally followed by painful swelling of parotid glands. Symptoms typically occur between 16 to 18 days after exposure to the mumps virus. One-third of infected people do not show symptoms. Mumps can lead to complications such as deafness and inflammation of the testes, breasts, ovaries, pancreas, meninges, and brain. Very rarely, mumps can affect testicles and is responsible for reduced fertility and sterility in males. The transmission of mumps occurs through respiratory secretions such as droplets and saliva and direct contact with an infected person.
Antibody testing, complement fixation test, hemagglutination test, neutralization test, viral cultures, and RT–PCR test (viral RNA detection) are several diagnostic techniques for this disease. Some of the treatments for mumps are getting plenty of bed rest and fluids, using pain killers (ibuprofen and paracetamol), warm or cold compress to ease swollen glands, avoiding foods that require lots of chewing, avoiding sour food and vaccination (MMR vaccine).
What is Parotitis?
Parotitis is the inflammation of parotid glands. Parotid glands are salivary glands located on either side of the face. Parotitis can happen due to infections as well as non-infectious causes like dehydration and duct obstruction. Viruses and bacteria are the infectious agents of parotitis. Bacterial agents such as Staphylococcus aureus and any commensal bacteria can cause parotitis. Mycobacterium that causes tuberculosis can cause parotitis. Viruses that cause mumps and HIV can cause parotitis. Trauma, surgery, drug exposure, and radiation therapy, especially whole-brain radiation therapy, are several uncommon causes of parotitis. Tooth problems can also cause parotitis. The most common symptom of mumps is parotitis.
Clinical signs of parotids are pain and discomfort, glandular enlargement and swelling, dry mouth, and sometimes fever. The diagnosis can be made by the increased levels of serum and urinary amylase during the first week.
What are the Similarities Between Mumps and Parotitis?
- Both mumps and parotitis can be infectious.
- The most common symptom of mumps is parotitis.
- Both can occur due to viral infections.
- They can be transmitted through respiratory droplets and direct contact with saliva.
- In both cases, swelling of salivary glands, pain, and fever are common symptoms.
What is the Difference Between Mumps and Parotitis?
Mumps is a viral disease caused by the Mumps virus, while parotitis is the inflammation of parotid glands. Thus, this is the key difference between mumps and parotitis. Moreover, mumps is caused by a virus, while parotitis is caused by viruses or bacteria or by non-infectious causes. So, this is another difference between mumps and parotitis. Besides, symptoms of mumps include painful swelling of the parotid glands, fever, headache, malaise, muscle pain, and loss of appetite, whereas symptoms of parotitis are pain and discomfort, glandular enlargement and swelling, dry mouth, and sometimes fever. Furthermore, antibody testing, complement fixation test, hemagglutination test, neutralization test, viral cultures, and RT–PCR test are some diagnostic methods for mumps, while parotitis can be diagnosed by serum and urinary amylase rise during the first week of parotitis.
Below is a summary of the difference between mumps and parotitis in tabular form for side-by-side comparison.
Summary – Mumps vs Parotitis
Mumps is a viral disease in humans. The major symptom of the mumps is parotitis. Parotitis is the inflammation of parotid glands. Parotitis can occur due to viruses, bacteria, and other non-infectious causes. Swelling and pain of parotid glands can be seen in both cases. Both conditions are contagious and can be transmitted through respiratory droplets and direct contact with saliva. So, this summarizes the difference between mumps and parotitis.
1. “Mumps PHIL 130 lores” By CDC/NIP/Barbara Rice – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Public Health Image Library (PHIL) (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “An Overview Of Parotid Glands” By Juan Reddish – (CC BY-SA 2.0) via Commons Wikimedia