Measles vaccine is given to the infants when they complete 9 months of life. Is measles a common disease that early in life?
Measles is a common disease among young children
Measles is a highly contagious disease; spread by breathing, coughing or sneezing the viral infected respiratory droplets and direct contact with the diseased patient. Before the vaccines came into existence, more than 90% children used to be infected with this deadly viral disease. Measles can be severe with complications like Pneumonia and Encephalitis, which can be fatal in children less than 5 years of age.
Why vaccine is given only after completion of 9 months?
Since, infants are protected against Measles for 6-9 months only after birth, by the passive immunity attained through maternal antibodies. Measles vaccine has to be essentially given to all infants >9 months of age and young children for further immunity as a part of national immunization programs.
Second dose should be given at 15 months followed by 3rd dose at 4 years. All school going children should be vaccinated for measles essentially.
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