Measles is an acute, highly contagious infection with the measles virus. You get a runny nose (catarrh), fever, sore eyes (conjunctivitis) and a rash all over the body. Although complete recovery is usual in rich territories, inflammation of the brain with fits, coma and death can occur. Vaccination is highly effective at preventing the spread of measles. Due to measles vaccination: between 1999 and 2005, there was a 60% reduction in annual measles deaths worldwide, from 873,000 to 345,000. Africa, where children were most prone to die when they caught measles because of poor nutrition and other infections including HIV, had a 75% drop in deaths. In 1999, 506,000 African children died; 90% aged under five. By 2005, the figure had fallen to 126,000...Measles eradication could conceivably be stymied not by the developing world, but by dissenters [from the vaccination programme] in rich territories such as the United Kingdom. The Guardian, 19/1/07, quoting from United Nations figures reported in the medical journal, the Lancet.
In 2002 Measles caused 6.2% of deaths in children under 15 years old, 1.4% of all female deaths and 2.5% of all deaths in very poor territories with low life expectancy.
Global Burden of Disease estimated in 2002 Measles to cause 1.7% of all Male, 1.9% of all Female and 2.8% of all Very poor territory burden of disease (Disability Adjusted Lost Years).
Measles caused 1.1% of all deaths worldwide in 2002 with an average of 98 deaths per million people.