Sean Gallup/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Should Your Child Get An Extra Mumps Vaccine? The CDC Now Recommends 3 Doses For Some Kids

Ad failed to load

The dangerous growing trend of forgoing childhood vaccinations has led to a rise in a disease most parents of small children are too young to even remember. Immunizations lose effectiveness over time, and with outbreaks becoming more commonplace, it might be time to consider whether your child should receive an extra mumps vaccine. Last October, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices unanimously recommended that those at risk of mumps during an outbreak should receive a third dose of mumps-containing vaccine (either measles-mumps-rubella, commonly referred to as MMR, or measles, mumps, rubella, and varicella, also known as MMRV).

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the current schedule of two doses is still effective, but immunity decreases over time, so patients who live, work, or go to school in close contact settings are particularly at risk of contracting the disease during an outbreak, the incidence of which has been increasing since 2006. Between January 2016 and June 2017, there were 150 mumps outbreaks in the United States, causing 9,200 cases in people with a median age of 21. Half of these outbreaks occurred at universities, 32 percent were in community groups or sports teams, 13 percent were in schools, and 5 percent were in households.

Ad failed to load

According to the CDC, mumps symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, loss of appetite, and swollen and tender salivary glands. That may sound like no big deal to those who grew up at a time when it was no longer a routine childhood illness, but in some cases, mumps can lead to complications such as inflammation of the ovaries, breast tissue, or testicles (the latter of which can lead to fertility problems); as well as encephalitis, meningitis, or deafness. Infected people can spread the virus by coughing, sneezing, or even talking. It can also be contracted by sharing drinks or food, or touching objects or surfaces that an infected person has touched.

On Friday, the CDC officially endorsed the ACIP recommendation, noting that of those 9,200 recently recorded cases, 5,015 patients were known to have previously received the recommended two doses of MMR vaccine. The effectiveness of two doses is thought to range from 31 to 95 percent. Originally, only one dose of the MMR vaccination was recommended, but it was increased to two in response to a series of measles outbreaks in the late 1980s.According to the CDC, those updated guidelines led to a substantial reduction in measles and mumps cases, but in 2006, the mumps came back in a big way, even in populations with high two-dose coverage. Though things temporarily improved, 2016 saw a 10-year high in mumps cases, and though 2017 data is still being compiled, it's on track to match the previous year.

Ad failed to load

The CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report observed that there were, as expected, lower rates of mumps among people who received a third dose during the outbreak compared with those who had only received two doses. Evidence of decreased effectiveness over time was made clear by the fact that those who received their second dose 13 or more years prior to the outbreak had nine or more times the risk for contracting mumps than those whose second dose was administered within the last two years.

Five studies of patients who received a third MMR vaccine dose found that among the 14,368 total subjects, no serious side effects were reported, and mild side effects were rare and short-lived. Just 6 to 7 percent of children and 6 to 12 percent of young adults experienced swollen lymph nodes, diarrhea, headache, or joint pain, which lasted a median of one to three days.

A routine third MMR or MMRV dose is not yet officially recommended for everyone by the CDC, but that may be forthcoming once more research has been completed. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is expected to make its own recommendation upon review of the CDC data. In the mean time, if there's a mumps outbreak in your area, ask your child's pediatrician if they believe a third vaccination would be beneficial. And if they haven't already had their recommended doses, please get them before it's too late.

Ad failed to load

Check out Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:

Watch full episodes of Romper's Doula Diaries on Facebook Watch.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

Umm, Toys "R" Us Has A BOGO 50 Percent Off Deal So You Better Stock Up

After the holidays, you were probably hoping that your kid's massive toy collection would keep him entertained for a little while, at least. But that was wishful thinking, wasn't it? Because now that a couple of months have passed, all those must-hav…
By Jacqueline Burt Cote

Turns Out, Kim Kardashian's Favorite Mom Products Look A Lot Like Your Own Faves

Being a mom is really hard work, especially for the first few months, and Kim Kardashian West is no different in that regard. Now the mother of three, Kardashian says that there are a few products she just can't live without when it comes to raising …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

These 9 Instant Pot Recipes Will Make Even The Pickiest Eater Happy At The Table

Like any parent, I've had my share of parenting hits and misses, but one of my favorite "wins" is my daughter's diverse palate. I don't even know if I can take credit for it, but I would like to think I had something to do with her love for lentils, …
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Soda Might Hurt Your Fertility, Study Says, & Here's What You Can Do

Who doesn't love sugary drinks? I stopped drinking soda years ago, but I still love gulping down those fancy Starbucks coffee beverages. I don't have a big sweet tooth, but I am a sucker for sugar-sweetened beverages every now-and-then. Turns out, th…
By Annamarya Scaccia

10 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 30s

If you're like me, you evaluate the pros and cons of any major life decision. When my husband and I were considering starting a family, I thought about my career, education, and financial stability. I wanted to know how a pregnancy and childbirth wou…
By Steph Montgomery

This Woman Thought She Had An Eyelash Stuck In Her Eye. Then It Moved.

I'm not a person who is easily icked out. As a kid, I collected bugs and thought I was going to be an entomologist and asked Santa Claus for ant farms and nets to catch bees. I'm still super curious about anything that flies and crawls, which might s…
By Karen Fratti

A Hot Mess Mom's Guide To Surviving Winter

As I sit here at my home office in Connecticut, it's cold. Damn cold. Winter is a rough season in New England and it's even worse when you're a parent and have to manage cooped up, restless children. It's even worse when you're a hot mess as it is, u…
By Jamie Kenney

5 Red Flags Your Toddler Isn't Eating Enough

Toddlers are notoriously picky eaters, at least in my experience. You offer mashed potatoes, they want french fries. You give them crackers, they scream for chips. It's frustrating, to be sure, but it's usually their way of vying for independence. It…
By Candace Ganger

11 Ways Your Pregnancy Will Be Different If You Have A Boy Vs A Girl

If you've been pregnant before, you might start comparing your previous pregnancies to that of your current pregnancy. A lot of things can change from pregnancy to pregnancy, based on a whole host of different factors (including how well you remember…
By Lauren Schumacker

35 Moms Share The Most Disgusting Things Their Husbands Do

I'm a human being who revels in challenges. I like when people present me with one, especially if they don't think I can meet or succeed it, and I like taking a challenge on, especially if it's unexpected. So when I aimed to uncover the most disgusti…
By Jamie Kenney

How Having Kids In Your 20s Affects You Later In Life

For parents, like myself, who had kids in their 20s, there are a number of questions that come to mind. When you're deciding what your future will look like, you'll likely consider what this means for your health, career, and more down the line. Thin…
By Tessa Shull

8 Reasons I Let My Toddler Play Outside Unsupervised

I'm not a helicopter mom, but I'm not exactly a free-range parent either. I like to think of myself as safely ensconced somewhere in the middle. I insist on certain safety measures, like car seats and helmets. I prefer to keep my 2-year-old in my sig…
By Kimmie Fink

12 Moms Share How They Stay Healthy During Flu Season

Unfortunately, we're in the middle of the roughest flu seasons in recent memory. And we’re not totally out of the woods, either. People around the country are still getting the flu, and, sadly, some of them are having to be hospitalized due to flu-re…
By Priscilla Blossom

8 "Mistakes" I'm Glad I Made During My First Pregnancy

As an adult, I've learned you never really stop hating being told what to do. When I was pregnant I was getting instructions at every turn, from doctors, relatives, and complete strangers on the subway. I would nod and smile but then go about making …
By Liza Wyles

Study: Drinking Two Glasses Of Wine A Day Is Good For Your Mind — Here's Why

There’s more scientific proof that a daily drink or two isn't necessarily a bad thing and could have a place in an overall healthy lifestyle. A new study out of the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) in New York found that — in mice, at le…
By Tiffany Thomas

Research Says Eating Carbs Can Lead To A Healthy Pregnancy, So Bring On The Pasta

In the world of me, no food is better than bread. I know it's supposed to be pretty terrible for you, high in calories, low in protein, and full of that modern-day demon, gluten... but guys, it's really yummy. Especially warm out of the oven, when th…
By Jen McGuire

These Photos Of Prince George Then & Now Will Give You Serious Baby Fever

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child in Spring 2018. With all of the excitement surrounding the new baby, it's easy to forget all of the good times that have already passed. The couple's eldest is already well into the sc…
By Azure Hall

This Is, Hands Down, The *Grossest* Thing Babies Do Inside The Womb

Your baby's life in the womb may be safe and warm, but it's also kind of grody. Seriously, the whole process of growing into a human being includes more than a few icky moments along the way. But this is the grossest thing babies do inside the womb b…
By Lindsay E. Mack