Third MMR Vaccine Dose Can Curtail Mumps Outbreak

In community with a large mumps outbreak, third MMR dose reduced attack rate by 75 percent

MONDAY, Nov. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Administering a third dose of the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine reduced the village-wide attack rate by about 75 percent in a community experiencing a large mumps outbreak despite a high rate of previous MMR vaccination, according to research published online Nov. 5 in Pediatrics.

Ikechukwu U. Ogbuanu, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D., of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, and colleagues offered a third dose of the MMR vaccine to over 2,000 eligible sixth- to 12th-grade students in a religious community in the Northeast affected by a large mumps outbreak, despite high two-dose MMR vaccine coverage.

The researchers found that, overall, 96.2 percent had documentation showing they had received two previous doses of MMR vaccine, and 80.6 percent chose to receive a third vaccine dose. The overall attack rate was statistically significantly reduced, from 4.93 percent before vaccination to 0.13 percent after the third dose was administered. In the village, the overall attack rate was reduced by 75.6 percent after the intervention, with the greatest effects observed in the 11- to 17-year-old age group.

"Our study assessed the use of a third MMR vaccine dose for mumps outbreak control in a setting with preexisting high two-dose vaccine coverage," the authors write. "The findings suggest a potential role of MMR vaccine for outbreak control in such limited settings."

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