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Measles vaccinations given in the 1970s and 1980s may be gone by now, doctor warns

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If you were vaccinated against measles in the 1970s or 80s, the protection may have worn off by now, some doctors warn.

Amid Florida’s current measles outbreak, Jill Roberts, an associate professor at the USF College of Public Health, spoke to FOX 13 in Tampa about the possibility of older vaccines becoming less effective over time.

The measles vaccine was first introduced in 1968.

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Three years later, in 1971, the MMR vaccine appeared.

This combination vaccine provides a trio of protection against measles, mumps and rubella.

Measles Division

If you were vaccinated against measles in the 1970s or 80s, the protection may have worn off by now, some doctors warn. (iStock)

A few decades after the MMR vaccine became available, measles was declared eliminated in the United States in 2000.

For those who were vaccinated against measles in the 70s and 80s — primarily people currently in their 40s and 50s — Roberts recommends checking their status with a health care provider.

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“There is absolutely no risk in getting another MMR, so if you don’t know, just go and get vaccinated,” she advised. “They are inexpensive and widely available.”

Measles is a highly contagious virus for those who have never been infected or vaccinated, Roberts warned – with up to a 90% chance of transmission.

MMR vaccine

For those who were vaccinated against measles in the 70s and 80s – primarily people who are currently in their 40s and 50s – Roberts recommends checking with a healthcare professional about their immune status. (George Frey/Getty Images)

Dr. Jacob Glanville, a virology expert and founder of Centivax, a San Francisco pharmaceutical company, warned of recent outbreaks in undervaccinated communities.

“If you’ve already received the MMR vaccine, you’re probably still immune, but talk to your doctor about a measles titer test if you have concerns,” he told Fox News Digital.

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The titer test measures an individual’s level of immunity to the virus.

Dr. Marc Siegel, clinical professor of medicine at Langone Medical Center of New York and a Fox News medical contributor, stressed the importance of measles vaccination – “especially with the amount of measles virus circulating and the number of underimmunized people arriving in the United States at a time when There is a sharp increase in measles worldwide.

measles epidemic skin

As of February 29, a total of 41 cases of measles have been reported by 16 U.S. jurisdictions. (iStock)

“It’s not an official suggestion yet, but I check the measles titers in a lot of my patients, and if they’re low, I may give a booster shot as a precaution,” he told Fox NewsDigital.

“The protection provided by the original vaccines may wear off over time.”

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As of February 29, a total of 41 cases of measles have been reported by 16 jurisdictions: Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

For more health articles, visit www.foxnews.com/health.

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