Measles

Measles is a vaccine preventable, viral disease that affects the respiratory tract and can sometimes lead to serious complications like blindness, miscarriage, brain damage and death. It is so contagious that if one person has it, 90% of the people close to that person who are not immune will also become infected.

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What Are The Symptoms?

Fever

Rash

Cough

Runny nose

Red eyes

Sleepiness

Small, white spots may appear inside the mouth and throat. These are called Koplik spots.

How does it spread?

when an infected person coughs or sneezes, and you breathe it in

by direct contact with fluid from a person’s coughs or sneezes

when you touch something that has the measles virus on it, then touch your own nose or mouth.

Who is at a high risk

Adults aged >20 years.

Pregnant women.

People with compromised immune systems, such as from leukemia and HIV infection.

Infants and children aged <5 years.

What are some serious complications caused due to measles?

  • Ear infections

  • Blindness

  • Pneumonia (lung infection)

  • Encephalitis (swelling of the brain), which can cause seizures, brain damage or death

  • Premature labour, miscarriage and low birth weight if contracted during pregnancy

What should I know About Measles?

  • What should I do if I’m unsure whether I’m immune to measles?

    If you do not have written documentation of measles immunity, you should get vaccinated with measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine. There is no harm in getting another dose of MMR vaccine if you may already be immune to measles (or mumps or rubella).


  • How effective is the measles vaccine?

    The measles vaccine is very effective. Two doses of measles vaccine are about 97% effective at preventing measles if exposed to the virus. One dose is about 93% effective. Moreover, vaccinated people are much more likely to have a milder illness and are also less likely to spread the disease to other people, including people who can’t get vaccinated because they are too young or have weakened immune systems.


  • Who should not get the MMR Vaccine?

    Some people should not get the MMR vaccine or should wait. Tell your vaccine provider if the person getting the vaccine: Has any severe, life-threatening allergies Is pregnant, or thinks she might be pregnant. Has a weakened immune system Has a parent, brother, or sister with a history of immune system problems. Has ever had a condition that makes them bruise or bleed easily. Has recently had a blood transfusion Has tuberculosis.


Myths Vs Facts

  • Myth: The MMR vaccine causes autism.

    Fact: There is no evidence that MMR causes autism, but a great deal of evidence that shows it does not cause autism.

  • Myth: The MMR vaccine does not prevent serious illness and death

    Fact: The measles vaccine prevents thousands of deaths each year worldwide

  • Myth: The measles vaccine can be deadly.

    Fact: There have been no deaths shown to be related to the vaccine in healthy people

  • Myth: The MMR vaccine can cause the measles.

    Fact: The vaccine does not cause measles. While the vaccine is made from a live virus, it is weakened so that it doesn’t cause the disease, but rather causes your immune system to recognize the virus and develop immunity to it.

  • Myth: The spread of measles can be controlled with proper sanitation.

    Fact: Better sanitation has a minimal effect on measles, which is spread person to person and through the air

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