Congenital Rubella

by chelseajin

I must have heard wrong because you cannot give Rubella vaccine to a pregnant woman.

Rubella aka German Measles, is basically a mild fever with an accompanying rash. The rash has a downward pattern of spread, starting from the forehead and usually clears after 3 days. We need to watch out for this in pregnant women because it’s something that can’t be vaccinated against once someone is pregnant, and it can cause serious congenital defects in the fetus.

So we had someone who had no documentation of being vaccinated and was already a few months along. The only recourse is to vaccinate her and the child after delivery. Hopefully no one around her has it. The only good thing about Rubella is that there’s no animal reservoir so you get it from other sick people.

Rubella is a live vaccine, meaning that it’s the it’s an intact virus particle which will create an immune response. It’s particularly dangerous in this case since the particles can cross the placenta to the fetus and cause congenital rubella syndrome, the effects of which are deafness, corneal clouding, “blueberry muffin rash”, mental retardation, heart defects (50% have patent ductus arteriosus), and more.