Resurgence in mumps effecting male fertility


Urologists at a leading hospital in Ireland have reported an alarming increase in the number of teenage boys and young men developing mumps orchitis or testicular atrophy. The condition can cause infertility but is more likely to lead to sub-fertility.

The shift has resulted from a reduction in the administration of the MMR vaccine. Since the MMR vaccine was introduced globally in 1968, there has been a dramatic reduction in mumps cases. The United States recorded a 99 percent fall in new cases. However, 15 years ago, there was a shortage of vaccines and lots of publicity about side effects from the MMR vaccination, including reports linking it to autism, inflammatory bowel disease and Crohn’s disease. Research has proven these claims wrong, but the unpopularity of the vaccine remains.

In the UK only 58 percent of children receive the MMR vaccination and this is leading to the increased cases of mumps. “It is those unvaccinated boys we are now seeing in our urology department” says Niall Davis the Urology Research Registrar who teamed with colleagues at Mater Misericordiae University Hospital in Dublin to produce the report which considered five decades of data. “It’s estimated that as many as 42% of patients with mumps experience at least one complication. As well as swollen testicles, these can include inflammation of the ovaries, aseptic meningitis, acute inflammation of the brain, deafness and pancreatitis. The recent resurgence in the disease means that a significant proportion of the 15 to 24 year olds living in heavily populated environments are affected.”

The report urges doctors to vaccinate the unvaccinated males in the 15-24 age group and to let them know the consequences to contracting the mumps. “Boys who did not receive the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine during the mid 1990s are now collecting in large numbers in secondary schools and colleges and this provides a perfect breeding ground for virus,” he said.

Source: ScienceDaily


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