Measles (rubeola) is a highly contagious viral disease that spreads from person to person by respiratory droplets.
Common signs and symptoms include fever, runny nose, cough, conjunctivitis (pink eye) and a rash all over the body.
Severe complications are rare but may include pneumonia, encephalitis (swelling around the brain), and even death.
Vaccination with 2 doses of measles-containing vaccine is the most safe and effective way to prevent the disease. Studies show that
99% of persons who receive two doses of measles vaccine develop immunity (protection against the disease).
Children should get 2 doses of MMR (Measles-Mump-Rubella) or MMRV* (Measles-Mumps-Rubella-Varicella) vaccine. The first dose should be
given on or after the first birthday. The second dose should be given at 4-6 years of age, at least 4 weeks after the first dose. If MMRV
was given as the first dose, the second dose must be given 3 or more months after the first. Infants vaccinated prior to their first birthday
should be revaccinated with 2 doses of MMR (or MMRV). One dose should be given at 12-15 months of age and another at least 4 weeks later.
In this instance, if MMRV was given as the first dose at 12-15 months, the second dose must be given 3 or more months after the first.
Adults born after 1956 should get at least one dose of MMR vaccine, unless they can show proof that they were vaccinated or have a lab test
that shows that they are immune to measles. Certain adults (college students, international travelers, and healthcare personnel) may be more
likely to be exposed to measles and should ask their health care provider if they are due to be vaccinated.
*MMRV vaccine is licensed for children 12 months through 12 years of age.