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    Home > Adult Immunisation > Mumps

Mumps FAQ's

Starting college this year? And under 25 years?

Protect yourself against mumps

Many third level colleges were hit with major mumps outbreaks 

If you are starting college this year and are under 25 you could be at risk of getting mumps during the next academic year. Many Irish universities and colleges had major mumps outbreaks during the past few academic years. Students between 17 - 24 years were most affected because many of them only ever recieved one dose of MMR vaccine. MMR  protects against measles, mumps and rubella. Two doses are needed to protect against infection.


What is Mumps?

Mumps is an acute viral illness that causes fever, headache and painful swollen salivary glands.


How is it spread?

It is spread from person to person by coughs and sneezes. It can also be transmitted through direct contact with saliva, including kissing.


How serious is it?

You could be ill enough to miss two weeks from college, studying, taking exams or socialising.


What are the complications?

Generally complications are mild but mumps can cause meningitis, deafness, inflammation of the pancreas, ovaries or testicles.


How can you be protected?

Immunisation with MMR vaccine is the best protection. Two doses of MMR are recommended to offer you full protection.


Who needs to get the MMR?

If you are under 25 and have only had one dose of MMR you need to have a second dose. If you were never vaccinated with MMR you need two doses. Older students usually dont need MMR vaccine as they probably were infected with mumps as young children before the vaccine was available.


How many doses of MMR have you ever recieved?

If you do not know how many doses of MMR vaccine you have recieved, check your immunisation records (check with a parent / GP / HSE Community Care Office). If you still are unsure you should go ahead and get at least one dose of MMR.


Where do you get the MMR vaccine?

Get in touch with your GP to find out about your FREE MMR VACCINE.

If you are living away from home or are unable to contact your GP you can contact your student health service.



For further information

1    "Jack" Poster is available to download from here (A4 size) or here (A3 size)

1   "Jill" Poster is available to download from here (A4 size) or here (A3 size)

This section was updated on 25th January 2012
Health Protection Surveillance Centre The Department of Health and Children Irish College Of General Practitioner