My 6yo has not had the MMR. I have a 1yo--too young to get the MMR, but also too young to get measles. The 6yo hasn't reacted well to any vaccine containing aluminum. I realize the MMR is much different, but it's made us much more concerned overall.
Now, we realize we have a 6yo who is school-aged, and thus at the appropriate age to do ok if he were to get measles. On the other hand, the 1yo is at an age where he'd be at a much greater risk for complications (like SSPE).
Even our pediatrician is not overly concerned about measles. She has not brought up the 6yo's lack of MMR (and focused only on convincing us to do the then-PCV7). Anyway, from what I've read, and what I've heard from older relatives, measles, itself, while a misery, generally leaves kids ok. The problem is with those who have it too young.
Measles is, of course, floating around a bit more than usual this year. Locally, a vaccinated 2yo recently came down with measles (no one knows where the child picked it up).
--How concerned do we need to be that our 6yo picks measles up somewhere and gives it to the 1yo?
--Is there really that much measles floating around? And, if it's just floating around, couldn't the 1yo just get it himself (without the 6yo's involvement) by touching things outside and putting his hands in his mouth?
--How likely is SSPE? And, is it true that it's much more likely in a child who had measles under 2? Or, is it really much more likely in a child under 1?
--If we chose to vaccinate the 6yo, does he need to be kept away from the 1yo for a month? I suppose we could do them both at the 1yo's 15 month appointment, but obviously anything can happen between now and then. (I didn't want to vaccinate the 1yo now--it's my understanding that the vaccine works better in children who receive it at 15 months. Is this correct?)
Thank you! I appreciate your thoughts on this.
Even with the increase this year, there will still only be less than 200 cases nationwide by the end of the year (that's among what, 150 million Americans?). So, it is very very very very unlikely either of your kids will catch it. I forget if SSPE is more likely in younger infants. But most cases get through the disease withOUT complications. I don't consider this much of a risk yet. We'll see what the incidence of the disease does in the coming few years. Overall SSPE is very rare anyway. Yes, the shot works a bit better the older you wait. I don't remember is 15 mo is much better than 12 months though. And you wouldn't need to keep your kids apart
Thank you, Dr. Sears! I appreciate the dose of reality--both with respect to how much measles is actually out there and with respect to not needing to quarantine one child from another if we do choose the vaccine at this point.
(Also, to clarify: you meant that most get through the disease withOUT complications, right? At least, that's what it sounded like in context.)
Thank you again!