Common Health Question
Rubella, also known as german measles, is rare in the UK nowadays, but if you develop the infection in pregnancy, there's a serious risk for your unborn baby.
This is called congenital rubella syndrome (CRS).
If a pregnant woman does become infected with rubella during the first 20 weeks of pregnancy, there is no treatment that is known to prevent CRS.
If you're pregnant and develop a rash, or come into contact with anyone who has a rash, contact your GP or midwife immediately.
If necessary, they can arrange tests to check if you have rubella.
You should avoid any antenatal or maternity setting until you've been assessed, to avoid contact with other pregnant women.
If you're thinking about having a baby, it's a good idea to check that you're fully protected against rubella.
If you're not sure whether you've had two doses of the MMR vaccine, ask your GP practice to check your vaccination history.
Ask for the vaccinations if your records show you haven't had both doses, or there is no record.
Because MMR vaccination could cause a risk to your baby in pregnancy, you should avoid becoming pregnant for one month after having it. This means you'll need a reliable method of contraception.
For the same reason, you can't have the vaccination when you're pregnant.
If you're currently pregnant, and you're not sure whether you've had two doses of MMR, ask your GP practice to check your records.
If you haven't had two doses of the MMR vaccine, or there's no record available, you should ask for the vaccine when you go for your six-week postnatal check-up after your baby is born.