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Anyone have knowledge of immunity status of mumps??

(12 Posts)
mears Wed 19-Jan-05 12:22:29

My 17 year ols DS has been advised to have MMR because of increased risk of mumps in his age group.

He has had measles vaccine in 1988, MMR in 1989 and then a repeat MR in 1994 because there was supposed to be a measles epidemic (never materialised).

I am not keen that he has another MMR - I took the decision for his younger brother and sister to have single MMR only. I do not want him to get mumps and possible orchitis and sterility, however I don't want him getting an unecessary vaccination.

GP said he would find out about checking immunity. He has been told by the consultant bacteriologist that identifying mumps antibody in a blood sample does not mean anything. It shows ex[posure but not immunity so is therefore actually not worth doing. Is that really the case? How can immunity be checked for other diseases such as rubella but not mumps?

I feel backed into a corner here. Need to know what to do for the best. Have told GP I want test dome anyway. If he has absolutely no antibody present then I will need to rethink.
Any experts out there?

lailag Wed 19-Jan-05 12:58:54

Not an expert but doesn't make sense to me. Did a bit of medline search. The only thing I can think of is that "just" the presence of antibodies isn't enough to protect against mumps but the level of antibodies must have reached a certain level to be protective. But a blood test should be able to determine whether he has "enough" antibodies or not????


Measles and mumps, but not rubella, outbreaks have been reported amongst populations highly vaccinated with a single dose of measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine. Repeated experience has shown that a two-dose regime of measles vaccine is required to eliminate measles. This paper reports the effect of the first and second MMR doses on specific antibody levels in a variety of populations.2-4 years after receiving a first dose of MMR vaccine at age 12-18 months, it was found that a large proportion of pre-school children had measles (19.5%) and mumps (23.4%) IgG antibody below the putative level of protection
Vaccine. 2002 Jan 15;20(7-8):1134-40. Related Articles, Links


Immunogenicity of second dose measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine and implications for serosurveillance.

Pebody RG, Gay NJ, Hesketh LM, Vyse A, Morgan-Capner P, Brown DW, Litton P, Miller E.


The low-level range for antibodies against mumps is 1:230</=1:500 .

mears Wed 19-Jan-05 14:24:09

Thanks Lailag - I think the same. Thanks for those levels. Will arrange blood test and see from there.

secur Wed 19-Jan-05 14:24:59

Message withdrawn

mears Wed 19-Jan-05 14:32:22

I got it done by working all night secur. Was submitted in time but not sure if I answered the question!

mears Wed 19-Jan-05 16:29:14

Have been googling all day. Found this about testing for immunity. I think I am beaten on this one.

secur Wed 19-Jan-05 16:43:33

Message withdrawn

Jimjams Wed 19-Jan-05 16:48:47

I think the GP is being a bit disingenious tbh. this is an argument used by people who are against vaccination- that antibody status tells you nothing about immunity- and they apply it to all vaccines. I think that in most cases orthodox medics would say that a certain level of antibodies equates to likely immunity, although certainly it can never be guaranteed.

Jimjams Wed 19-Jan-05 16:50:17

ah just read your link though- le arn something every day!

mears Thu 20-Jan-05 09:22:22

Have booked him in for Feb 15th.

When he was ill and we thought it might be mumps I felt terrible. I think that if he had got mumps as a small boy it wouldn't be such an issue for me. However, an adolescent getting mumps can be more serious and I would feel terrible if he became sterile as a consequence (extremely rare I know). One of my neighbours is sterile due to mumps so it is a real issue for me.
Problem is, DS will so whatever I suggest even though he is at the age to make his own decision.
DH says I read into things too much and should have just got it dome when the letter came. I feel better having researched it all.

mears Thu 20-Jan-05 09:37:38

secur - read it back and thought 'sh*t, I haven't answered the question!'. Will just have to wait and see - at least it is in

lailag Thu 20-Jan-05 13:12:19

just another littlestory. Was given hep B booster without blood test to see what my antibody level was. It would have been too expensive to do bloodtests on everyone first.

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