Can measles be prevented?
The measles vaccine protects against the virus. The vaccine is usually given during childhood with the mumps and rubella (German measles) vaccines (MMR) or with the mumps, rubella, and chickenpox (varicella) vaccines (MMRV).
Some parents are afraid to give their child the MMR vaccine because they have heard that it can cause autism. But researchers have done many large studies and have found no connection between the MMR vaccine and autism.1
Getting your child vaccinated is important, because measles can sometimes cause serious problems such as pneumonia. And in rare cases, it can even cause seizures or meningitis.
If you have been exposed to measles and you have not had the vaccine, you may be able to prevent the infection by getting a shot of immune globulin (IG) right away. Babies who are younger than 12 months, pregnant women, and people who have impaired immune systems that cannot fight infection may need to get immune globulin if they are exposed to measles.