A SHARP rise in measles cases has led to calls for the vaccination age to be lowered.
There were 2,000 confirmed cases of the illness in Spain last year, compared to just 173 in 2010, according to Spain’s Association of Paediatricians (AEP).
The increase is being attributed to an upsurge in measles across Europe, with over 30,000 reported cases last year, including eight deaths.
The AEP are now advising that the age at which children receive the MMR triple vaccine be lowered from 15 months to 12 months.
It follows a number of cases in which children between the age of 12 and 15 months old contracted the viral illness.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), measles is one of the leading causes of death among young children, although fatalities caused by the illness dropped 78 per cent between 2000 and 2008 due to vaccinations.
Symptoms usually appear 10-12 days after infection and include high fever, runny nose, bloodshot eyes and tiny white spots on the inside of the mouth.