Effectiveness of Chicken Pox Vaccine - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

2/17/04

Effectiveness of Chicken Pox Vaccine

Nobody talks much about the chicken pox vaccine unless a child gets the shot, and then ends up later with the chicken pox anyway. Sound like a fluke? Maybe not.

Researchers are finding now that the chicken pox vaccine may lose some of its protection after that first year. The good news is that a study of more than 600 children from age one to 16 shows that overall, the chicken pox vaccine is about 90% effective. But beyond that first year, when a child gets the shot, researchers at Yale Medical School say they're finding a significant drop in protection for those kids in later years. Which means it may not be such a good idea to let your children be exposed to another child with chicken pox because their vaccine may be wearing down a little.

Researchers aren't sure why the vaccine's protection declines after the first year. They say the cases of chicken pox that did occur in vaccinated children were milder than normal. They say their findings show that in the first eight years after vaccination the shot offers good protection from the chicken pox, although cases of virus among vaccinated children are not rare.

Cases of chicken pox have dropped in this country since the vaccine went into use. For more information about the study, you can ( click here ). The study was conducted at Yale University School of Medicine and is published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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