MMRV vaccine and the risk of febrile seizures

January 01, 0001

MMRV vaccine and the risk of febrile seizures

Preliminary evidence suggests a possible increase risk of seizure with the quadravalent measles-mumps-rubella-varicella vaccine. These US researchers using 2000-2008 Vaccine Safety Datalink data assessed physician visits for fevers and seizures among children aged 12 to 23 months after MMRV and separate MMR + varicella vaccines.

The authors found: "MMRV vaccine recipients (83,107) were compared with recipients of MMR + varicella vaccines (376,354). Seizure and fever significantly clustered 7 to 10 days after vaccination with all measles- containing vaccines but not after varicella vaccination alone. Seizure risk during days 7 to 10 was higher after MMRV than after MMR + varicella vaccination (relative risk 1.98). Supplementary analyses yielded similar results. The excess risk for febrile seizures 7 to 10 days after MMRV compared with separate MMR + varicella vaccination was 4.3 per 10 000 doses."

The authors concluded: "Among 12- to 23-month-olds who received their first dose of measles-containing vaccine, fever and seizure were elevated 7 to 10 days after vaccination. Vaccination with MMRV results in 1 additional febrile seizure for every 2300 doses given instead of separate MMR + varicella vaccines. Providers who recommend MMRV should communicate to parents that it increases the risk of fever and seizure over that already associated with measles-containing vaccines."

These researchers demonstrate an increased risk of febrile seizures in children receiving the MMRV vaccine.

For the full abstract, click here.

Pediatrics 126(1):e1-e8, July 2010
© 2010 American Academy of Pediatrics
Measles-Mumps-Rubella-Varicella Combination Vaccine and the Risk of Febrile Seizures. Nicola P. Klein, Bruce Fireman, W. Katherine Yih, et al.

Category: B. Blood/Immune Mechanisms, N. Neurological. Keywords: measles, varicella, febrile seizures, vaccine, MMRV, epidemiologic study, journal watch.
Synopsis edited by Dr Paul Schaefer, Toledo, Ohio. Posted on Global Family Doctor 17 August 2010

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