mumps

A multidisciplinary team from Texas just published their work in PLOS Medicine on U.S. vaccination rates in children, specifically focusing on nonmedical exemptions (NMEs) in states and counties. With 72.2% of those 19 to 35 months of age fully vaccinated nationwide, the researchers sought to determine the impact of parental concerns over safety and efficacy in opt out rates due to religious and philosophical beliefs. Their analysis of data was based on the 18 states that allow more nonspecific, philosophical-belief NMEs that can include religious objections.

What did they discover?

         As summarized from...

I recently returned from spending two weeks on a college campus in upstate New York. While there, I was surprised to see, in every building that I entered, signs posted with health information about mumps. Mumps... the same viral infection that was predicted to be eliminated from the United States by 2010.

Before the mumps vaccine was available in 1967, there were an estimated 150,000 - 200,000 cases reported each year. Since then, the number of cases of mumps has decreased by 99% in the United States. That being said, there remains a lot of fluctuation from year to year, easily seen in the graph below. To this point, there is an outbreak of mumps currently in Washington state, with nearly 300 cases reported - a large number compared to the normal ebb and flow of mumps from year...

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The numbers of the sick, and the dead, pile up: the CDC says this is the worst flu season in recent years, although a significant part of that designation derives from the woeful success rate of this year s vaccine, around 23 percent effective.

Some of the disturbing stats: About 198 out of every 100,000 people 65 and older have been hospitalized with flu-related illness this...

Measles is Back!A large Canadian study shows that infants who receive the MMR vaccine (protective against measles, mumps and rubella) and at the same visit receive the varicella (chickenpox) vaccine termed MMRV have an approximately double the risk of febrile seizures within the 7-10 days thereafter, as compared with those who got the 2 shots separately (MMR+V). However, the absolute rate of such transient, self-limited seizures is minuscule, whether occurring after MMRV or MMR+V.

The group of researchers from the University of...

Screen Shot 2014-01-22 at 12.34.27 PMEach year, the CDC estimates the effectiveness of the current season s flu vaccine. They collected data from about 2300 children and adults in the U.S. Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness Network from December 2013 to January 2014. All patients presented with a medically attended acute respiratory illness and had not been treated with antiviral medication. Of those individuals, 34 percent tested positive for influenza with vaccination rates ranging from 38 to 48...