Learn about the diseases fought by the MMR vaccine

Learn about the diseases fought by the MMR vaccine

Diseases such as mumps, rubella and measles have in common the fact that they are highly infectious, acute and, in some cases, lead to hospitalization, complications and premature death. To prevent these infections that in the past caused epidemics (especially measles, responsible for millions of deaths worldwide), the Unified Health System (SUS) offers the MMR vaccine free of charge throughout the country. In the capital, the immunizing agent is applied by municipal equipment, including Basic Health Units (UBSs), Outpatient Medical Assistance (AMAs) and Integrated AMAs/UBSs.

Learn more about the three diseases covered by the MMR vaccine.


Mumps is a viral disease that affects the glands of the face responsible for the production of saliva, such as the parotid, submandibular and sublingual. As with other viral infections, mumps is spread through droplets when we talk, cough, or through direct contact with an infected person. It is more common in children and teenagers who are in school, but it can affect adults as well. It is worth mentioning that, once immunized by the vaccine, the person is no longer at risk of contracting mumps.

The most common symptom of this infection is significant enlargement of the salivary glands between the jaw and the ear, on one or both sides of the face. The swelling of the region brings pain, fever and, when it affects men, it can cause orchitis (inflammation of the testicles). In women, mumps can cause mastitis (infection of the breast tissue). Know other symptoms of mumps:

• headache;
• fatigue and weakness;
• loss of appetite and,
• pain when chewing and swallowing


Also known as “German measles”, rubella affects fetuses or newborns whose mother was infected during pregnancy (congenital rubella). The infection causes complications for both, such as miscarriage and congenital malformations – deafness, cardiac, ocular, among others. In addition, the virus also spreads through the air, facilitating contagion in day care centers and schools, causing infection.

According to the Ministry of Health (MS), in the 1992s, when vaccination coverage for this disease was gradually implemented with the MMR vaccine, the number of infections reduced considerably. As of 2009, 97% of the population had already been vaccinated and there were no more cases of rubella infection, which indicates the interruption of transmission of the virus. Know the symptoms of rubella:

• headache;
• body pain;
• coryza;
• appearance of bumps;
• low-grade fever and,
• red spots on the body.


Because it is an acute viral disease, easily transmitted by droplets that come out of the mouth, measles was once one of the biggest epidemic diseases, affecting mainly children and leading them to death. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), measles is a disease that periodically results in an epidemic. According to the organization, between January and February this year, 17,000 new measles cases were reported worldwide.

In addition to the discomfort that the symptoms bring, the infection can also leave lifelong sequelae. Respiratory infections, otitis (ear infections), neurological diseases, deafness, blindness and reduced mental capacity are aggravations that the disease can bring to the infected person. The main symptoms of measles are:

• fever and malaise;
• cough;
• conjunctivitis;
• coryza;
• loss of appetite;
• white spots on the inside of the cheek;
• red spots on the body;
• pneumonia.

The best way to avoid contagion by the disease is the vaccine offered by the municipal network. Therefore, it is important to make sure that you have taken the immunizer as a child, in addition to keeping your children’s vaccination book up to date; and, in case of red spots on the body, look for a UBS.
In case of symptoms of mumps, rubella or measles, look for one of the 470 UBS of the municipal health network and remember to keep the vaccination book of children up to date with the MMR vaccine.

Therefore, every eligible citizen must receive the vaccine to ensure their protection. Currently, children aged six months and under five years of age, health professionals and people born after 1960 can receive the immunizer and update their vaccination status.

Addresses can be found on the Busca Saúde platform.

SECOM – City Hall of the City of São Paulo
Phones: 3113-8835/ 3113-8831
Email: Imprensa@prefeitura.sp.gov.br
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Press room: Imprensa.prefeitura.sp.gov.br

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