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Kids who have had measles are at higher risk of fatal infections

Virus weakens immune system for years, study finds

By
2:00pm, May 7, 2015
Measels shot

BONUS SHOT  The measles vaccine gives people an unexpected bonus: Preventing measles keeps the immune system healthy enough to fend off other diseases.

Vaccinating kids against measles protects them from a slew of other deadly diseases, a new analysis published in the May 8 Science finds.

Even three years after measles infection, children are about twice as likely to die from other infectious diseases as children who haven’t had measles, the study suggests.

Johns Hopkins University epidemiologist William Moss finds the new results convincing. Preventing measles infections seems to come with the unexpected bonus of preventing other infections too, he says.

“Getting the message out that the measles vaccine has this extra benefit is very important,” Moss says. “Particularly in this country, at this time.”

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