No reactions to MMR
Most children who have the MMR vaccine do not have any problems with it, or if reactions to MMR do occur, they are usually mild. The risk of severe reactions to MMR, causing serious harm, or death, is extremely small.
The majority of parents we interviewed said that their child had no reaction at all, after either dose of the MMR vaccines. They stressed that they had been very worried beforehand, but their child had been exactly the same after the immunisation as they were before it. One mother gave her daughter the single measles vaccine and was planning to give mumps and rubella single vaccines. She said that her daughter had no reaction to it.
Having been very worried while making their decision, her son's MMR vaccine had been a bit of a...
And did he have any swelling or anything, any reaction at all?
No, I think, I don't even think we gave him Calpol. So it was a bit of a non-event.
Her son who had an egg allergy had no reaction to his MMR vaccine.
So there wasn't any reaction at all?
Nothing at all, no, absolutely fine.
Her daughter didn't have any reaction after her MMR vaccine.
No, she didn't. She was fine. Her usual self, you know, she was playing. You know, babies, it's just, you know, sometimes there might be side effects. But it's one thing that you have to take your chances I think in protecting your baby. But I didn't have any side effects, my daughter didn't have any side effects with any immunisations.
Her son had no reaction to the MMR vaccine.
A few mothers had worried that their child's medical problems could be a contraindication to giving MMR, but had followed their doctor's advice and given their child the vaccine. They were then relieved to find that, indeed, it didn't cause any reaction.
Her daughter's health problems improved after she had MMR.
The MMR vaccine had no effect on her daughter who had eczema.
And how was she, how were both of them after?
Well absolutely fine. There was, it, there, it wasn't anything like the primary ones. I, I had given them Calpol but they were a lot older, they didn't bother, they didn't have a sleep, it made absolutely no difference to them at all. It didn't give them a temp-, there was, there was just no difference in their behaviour. They had obviously that little lump, a tiny, tiny little lump under the skin where the, the needle had gone in and after a, I can't remember, probably in a few days it had gone. But they, they had no reaction whatsoever in any way, both of them. And in fact my younger daughter suffers from eczema and I had been told by a homeopath to be very careful in my decision-making she said, because she felt that it would exacerbate her eczema. But there wasn't even that reaction in her skin.
All the parents who said their child had little or no reaction to the MMR vaccine also said their child was now healthy and developing normally.
“He's perfectly normal, loud, boisterous, perfectly normal. Completely no effect. But you know, we kept looking and looking and looking but he was completely normal.” [Interview 31, Mother of a 2 and a half year-old-boy]
“She's her normal self really. Playing, always wants to play, laughing. Tries to say different words and copy you, what you do. It's like she always wants to play, she wants to hold you and take you somewhere and you know she's just herself. And she's always been like that, always laughing and jolly.” [Interview 36, Mother of a 17-month-old girl]
Describes her five-year-old daughter as happy and healthy and not affected at all by her MMR...
She's gone from a scrawny little child to a lovely podgy, you know, healthy happy one. So I would, I would just say to anybody to have it done, without doubt.
One parent said that their child had not had a reaction after the MMR vaccine. The child was diagnosed with autism four months afterwards, but his parents did not believe this was linked to the MMR vaccine. There is no evidence that autism is linked with the MMR vaccine.
He thought that the research suggesting a link between MMR and autism was not convincing enough...
And I think the great surprise and really the shock of the MMR thing is how such an insubstantial theory ended up having such an impact. And I think there's a number of reasons why that happened. But I think it's had a very unfortunate effect. But certainly from the outset, I must say looking into it I found it utterly unconvincing.
I sympathise very much with the experience of parents who have had that experience of having a child who's developed apparently perfectly normally up to a certain stage, often 12, 18 months, longer, and then appeared to regress into a state of autism. And I'm sympathetic with that experience because I've had that experience, because that's exactly what happened to us. I mean our son [name] appeared to be developing perfectly normally until about 18 months and then appeared to regress. And I can well understand that parents who found that time of regression coincided to some extent with the MMR immunisation might link the two. Although it's always somewhat difficult because the regression is never an overnight phenomenon. In my experience it's a gradual process, takes place over a few weeks rather than a few days, indeed months. Whereas obviously immunisation is a definite event. But nonetheless I can see if the immunisation took place around that time that you might link the two. Now in our case the immunisation, when we look back, because we never thought of any link at the time.
And it turned out that we noted the signs of his regression from about the Christmas and that he'd had the MMR in the August. So it was about four months before, when he was just over 12 months old. And, which is right round about the normal time that children have it. He was about 14 months when he had it. But we never noticed anything at the time. And in retrospect it didn't seem to be any link either, because it was four months later. So some people might say, 'Well, it was four months later but maybe there was some relation'. But we'd certainly never thought of any. And honestly it never seemed at all plausible.
Last reviewed October 2015
Last updated June 2011