Researchers found that infants who receive their measles vaccination on time have less risk of reactions such as fever and seizures, versus infants who receive it at a later age. They weren't able to determine why age made a difference:
The findings "highlight the importance of timely immunization of children," the researchers, from Kaiser Permanente Vaccine Study Center in Oakland, Calif., wrote in the Oct. 14 issue of the journal JAMA Pediatrics.
Some parents delay vaccination based on the unproven idea that "too many vaccines" at once could overwhelm the child's immune system, said Dr. Paul Offit, chief of the division of infectious diseases at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.
But that theory is unfounded, Offit said, as children's immune systems handle a wealth of challenges (such as bacteria and viruses in the environment) from the minute they are born. Children who do not receive vaccinations on time are at increased risk for catching vaccine-preventable diseases in the period when they are unvaccinated, Offit said.
The new study "just provides another reason why delaying vaccines would be an unreasonable thing to do, and potentially a more harmful thing to do," Offit told LiveScience.
Do you think it's unreasonable to delay vaccinations?