The study revealed that measles can “impair the body’s immune memory, causing the so-called immune amnesia.” The vaccine, on the other hand, prevents the body from forgetting its immune memory.
Krizjohn Rosales/File
Duque cites need for children to complete anti-measles shots
Sheila Crisostomo (The Philippine Star) - November 12, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) yesterday stressed the need for children to have complete anti-measles vaccination amid the threat of developing “immune amnesia” or the measles-induced wipeout of the immune system’s memory.

In an interview, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said they are looking into an international study that showed having measles infection reduces a person’s protection against other diseases.

“The study shows that if you do not get vaccinated and you get infected with measles, chances are your protective antibodies, which are already in your system, will be reduced significantly or substantially,” he noted.

Duque was referring to a study by Harvard Medical School published last Oct. 31 that cited evidence that the measles vaccine protects “in not one but two ways” because it provides a “general boost to the immune system.”

The study revealed that measles can “impair the body’s immune memory, causing the so-called immune amnesia.” The vaccine, on the other hand, prevents the body from forgetting its immune memory.

“It’s very compelling, you really have to have your vaccination. It takes two years for the protective antibodies against other bacteria and viruses to come back,” he added.

According to Duque, the study revealed that measles can “influence the reduction of the antibodies to other infection like polio, diphtheria, pertussis.”

“It makes sense to really have your children vaccinated against measles because of this,” he said.

Duque added DOH will be discussing the possibility of providing booster shots to eligible children but only after all target children have been vaccinated against the disease.                    

ANTI MEASLES DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH DOH
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