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May 1974

Polyneuropathy Following Rubella Immunization: A Follow-Up Study and Review of the Problem

Author Affiliations

Nashville, Tenn
From the Regional Rubella Unit, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tenn; and the Bureau of Laboratories, Center for Disease Control, Public Health Service, US Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Atlanta.

Am J Dis Child. 1974;127(5):684-688. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1974.02110240070008

Thirty-two children with post-rubella-immunization neuropathies were observed for up to 32 months. Twenty children (62%) had no subsequent symptoms. Ten (31%) had minor complaints that included features of their initial complications. Only two children (6%) had major recurrences. These episodes occurred periodically throughout the 2½-year follow-up period. Both recurrences were of the leg syndrome ("catcher's crouch"). Review of the literature indicates that neuropathy is an occasional complication of both natural rubella and immunization with live, attenuated rubella virus vaccines, especially the one prepared in dog kidney cells. The dog kidney cell vaccine is no longer in use. Currently available vaccines remain acceptable for continued use in public and private programs.

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