All content below is taken in its entirety from the CDC MMR (Measles, Mumps, & Rubella) Vaccine Information Statement (VIS): cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/mmr.html
Why get vaccinated?
MMR vaccine can prevent measles, mumps, and rubella.
Most people who are vaccinated with MMR will be protected for life. Vaccines and high rates of vaccination have made these diseases much less common in the United States.
Children need 2 doses of MMR vaccine, usually:
Infants who will be traveling outside the United States when they are between 6 and 11 months of age should get a dose of MMR vaccine before travel. These children should still get 2 additional doses at the recommended ages for long-lasting protection.
Older children, adolescents, and adults also need 1 or 2 doses of MMR vaccine if they are not already immune to measles, mumps, and rubella. Your health care provider can help you determine how many doses you need.
A third dose of MMR might be recommended for certain people in mumps outbreak situations.
MMR vaccine may be given at the same time as other vaccines. Children 12 months through 12 years of age might receive MMR vaccine together with varicella vaccine in a single shot, known as MMRV. Your health care provider can give you more information.
Talk with your health care provider
Tell your vaccination provider if the person getting the vaccine:
In some cases, your health care provider may decide to postpone MMR vaccination until a future visit.
People with minor illnesses, such as a cold, may be vaccinated. People who are moderately or severely ill should usually wait until they recover before getting MMR vaccine.
Your health care provider can give you more information.
Risks of a vaccine reaction
People sometimes faint after medical procedures, including vaccination. Tell your provider if you feel dizzy or have vision changes or ringing in the ears.
As with any medicine, there is a very remote chance of a vaccine causing a severe allergic reaction, other serious injury, or death.
What if there is a serious problem?
An allergic reaction could occur after the vaccinated person leaves the clinic. If you see signs of a severe allergic reaction (hives, swelling of the face and throat, difficulty breathing, a fast heartbeat, dizziness, or weakness), call 9-1-1 and get the person to the nearest hospital.
For other signs that concern you, call your health care provider.
Adverse reactions should be reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). Your health care provider will usually file this report, or you can do it yourself. Visit the VAERS website at www.vaers.hhs.gov or call 1-800-822-7967. VAERS is only for reporting reactions, and VAERS staff members do not give medical advice.
The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program
The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) is a federal program that was created to compensate people who may have been injured by certain vaccines. Claims regarding alleged injury or death due to vaccination have a time limit for filing, which may be as short as two years. Visit the VICP website at www.hrsa.gov/vaccine-compensation/index.html or call 1-800-338-2382 to learn about the program and about filing a claim.
How can I learn more?
Contact the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Vaccine information statements (VISs): MMR vaccine (measles, mumps, and rubella): What you need to know. cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/mmr.html. Updated August 6, 2021. Accessed July 20, 2023.BACK TO TOP
Review Date: 7/8/2023
Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Clinical Professor, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David C. Dugdale, MD, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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