About the Vaccine:

The measles vaccine provides excellent protection against measles as well as two other diseases–mumps and rubella.

Thanks to the vaccine, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared measles eliminated from the United States. However, travelers are still able to bring in the disease from other countries causing occasional, isolated outbreaks. Recent outbreaks within unvaccinated communities in the U.S. threaten to reverse this decision and pose a significant health threat to other unvaccinated people.


  • MMR
  • MMRV - includes chickenpox

Who should get the vaccine:

  • Children
  • Teenagers

Schedule information:

  • First dose - 12-15 months
  • Second dose - 4-6 years
  • Unimmunized teenagers and adults should receive one dose as soon as possible.
  • Women of childbearing age should be vaccinated before getting pregnant.

Once considered eradicated in the U.S. due to vaccine effectiveness, measles cases are on the rise again due to vaccine delay and refusal.

Safety & side effects:

Just as with any medication, there are potential side effects to vaccines. Talk to your health care provider about specific side effects associated with this vaccine and learn more about vaccine safety and common side effects.

Pregnancy considerations:

Do not get the vaccine if you are pregnant or think you might be pregnant. The vaccine is ok for women who are breastfeeding.

Before the vaccine, 3-4 million people became infected in the U.S. each year.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

About Measles

Measles is an airborne highly contagious disease that lives in the nose and throat mucus of an infected person. It is characterized by a rash that can also cause severe complications. It can be especially dangerous in young children and babies.

Measles is preventable with the MMR vaccine, which also protects against mumps and rubella.

About Mumps

Mumps is a contagious disease that is caused by a virus. Mumps typically starts with fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite. Then, most people will have swelling of their salivary glands (often referred to as parotitis when the parotid gland, in front and below the ear, swells). This is what causes the puffy cheeks and a tender, swollen jaw.

About Rubella

Rubella is a contagious disease caused by a virus. It is also called German measles, but it is caused by a different virus than measles. Most people who get rubella usually have mild illness, with symptoms that can include a low-grade fever, sore throat, and a rash that starts on the face and spreads to the rest of the body. Rubella can cause a miscarriage or serious birth defects in an unborn baby if a woman is infected while she is pregnant.


Infected people spread the virus by coughing or sneezing, which contaminates the air and surfaces it comes into contact with. People become infected by breathing contaminated air or by touching an infected surface and touching their eyes, mouth or nose. The virus can live outside the body for up to two hours.


7-14 days after infection:

  • High fever
  • Cough
  • Runny nose
  • Red, watery eyes

2-3 days after symptoms:

  • Tiny white spots occur inside the mouth

3-5 days after symptoms:

  • Rash occurs in the form of flat red spots that may join together into larger spots and/or develop raised bumps
  • Fever may occur

Measles is so contagious that up to 90% of unimmunized people around an infected person will also become infected.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention