Four cases of measles have been confirmed in Bucks and there are three suspected - prompting a warning to be issued to residents.

Public Health England (PHE) South East is urging people in Buckinghamshire to check they are up-to-date with two doses of the MMR vaccine following four confirmed and three suspected cases of measles in the Aylesbury area.

PHE is working closely with NHS and local authority partners to raise awareness of how the public can protect themselves and their families and prevent further cases.

Measles is a highly infectious viral illness that can lead to serious complications, especially in people with immune problems, pregnant women, and in babies younger than one.

Symptoms typically include:

• high fever (temperature of 39°C or higher)

• sore, red, watery eyes

• coughing

• aching and feeling generally unwell

• a blotchy red brown rash, which usually appears 2-4 days after the initial symptoms

Dr Conall Watson, PHE South East health protection consultant, said: “Measles is not a harmless childhood illness as many think – it is extremely infectious, can strike anyone of any age and sadly in some instances can have very serious long term and life changing consequences.

“The best form of protection against measles is the MMR vaccination which is why we’re urging people to check their MMR status. It is really important that anyone who hasn’t already had two doses of the MMR vaccine contacts their GP surgery for an appointment.

"If you’re unsure whether you or your children have had two MMRs, please check your child’s Red Book or contact your GP. You do not need additional MMR vaccines if you and your children have had two doses.

“Thanks to vaccinations like the MMR, measles is not as common in the UK as it once was, but in recent years we have seen more cases emerging, especially among groups and communities where MMR vaccination rates are not as high.”

Dr Watson said residents should contact a GP as soon as possible if you think you or your child might have measles.

He added: "It’s important to phone before you visit as your GP surgery may need to make arrangements to reduce the risk of spreading the infection to others.

“If you think you could have measles, it’s really important to stay away from places where there are lots of people – so don’t go to work or school, visit hospital or attend social gatherings until at least four days after the onset of the rash.”