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pneumococcal 13-valent conjugate vaccine

Pronunciation: NOO moe KOK al 13-VAY lent KON joo gate VAX een

Brand: Prevnar 13

What is the most important information I should know about this vaccine?

You should not receive a booster vaccine if you had a life-threatening allergic reaction after the first shot.

What is pneumococcal 13-valent conjugate vaccine?

Pneumococcal disease is a serious infection caused by a bacteria that can infect the sinuses, inner ear, lungs, blood, and brain. These conditions can be fatal.

Pneumococcal 13-valent vaccine is used to help prevent disease caused by pneumococcal bacteria. This vaccine contains 13 different types of pneumococcal bacteria.

Pneumococcal 13-valent vaccine is for use in adults and children at least 6 weeks old.

This vaccine helps your body develop immunity to the disease, but will not treat an active infection you already have.

Like any vaccine, pneumococcal 13-valent vaccine may not provide protection from disease in every person.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before receiving this vaccine?

You should not receive this vaccine if you ever had a severe allergic reaction to a pneumococcal or diphtheria toxoid vaccine.

Tell the vaccination provider if you or the child has:

  • a bleeding or blood clotting disorder such as hemophilia or easy bruising; or
  • a weak immune system (caused by disease or by using certain medicine).

Before your child receives this vaccine, tell your doctor if the child was born prematurely.

You can still receive a vaccine if you have a minor cold. In the case of a more severe illness with a fever or any type of infection, wait until you get better before receiving this vaccine.

Tell the vaccination provider if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

How is this vaccine given?

This vaccine is given as an injection (shot) into a muscle.

For infants and toddlers, the pneumococcal 13-valent vaccine is given in a series of shots. The first shot is usually given when the child is 6 weeks to 2 months old. The booster shots are then given at 4 months, 6 months, and 12 to 15 months of age.

If your child is 7 months to 5 years old, he or she can still receive this vaccine on the following schedule:

  • Age 7-11 months: Two shots at least 4 weeks apart, followed by a third shot after the child turns 1 year (at least 2 months after the second shot).
  • Age 12-23 months: Two shots at least 2 months apart.
  • Age 24 months to 5 years (before the 6th birthday): One shot.

The timing of this vaccination is very important for it to be effective. Your child's individual booster schedule may be different from these guidelines. Follow your doctor's instructions or the schedule recommended by your local health department.

For adults and children older than 5 years, this vaccine is usually given as one shot.

Be sure to keep your child on a regular schedule for other immunizations such as diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), hepatitis, and varicella (chicken pox). Your doctor or state health department can provide you with a recommended immunization schedule.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Contact your vaccination provider if you miss a booster dose or if you get behind schedule. The next dose should be given as soon as possible. There is no need to start over.

Be sure to receive all recommended doses of this vaccine or you may not be fully protected against disease.

What happens if I overdose?

An overdose of this vaccine is unlikely to occur.

What should I avoid before or after receiving this vaccine?

Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.

What are the possible side effects of this vaccine?

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

You should not receive a booster vaccine if you had a life threatening allergic reaction after the first shot.

Keep track of all side effects you have. If you need a booster dose, you will need to tell the vaccination provider if the previous shot caused any side effects.

Becoming infected with pneumococcal disease is much more dangerous to your health than receiving this vaccine. However, like any medicine, this vaccine can cause side effects but the risk of serious side effects is low.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • severe stomach pain, severe vomiting or diarrhea;
  • wheezing, trouble breathing;
  • high fever (102 degrees F or higher);
  • seizure (convulsions); or
  • severe pain, itching, irritation, or skin changes where the shot was given.

Common side effects include

  • fever, chills;
  • headache, feeling tired;
  • muscle or joint pain;
  • sleeping more or less than usual;
  • swelling, tenderness, or redness where a shot was given;
  • trouble moving the arm where a shot was given;
  • (in a child) crying or fussiness;
  • vomiting, loss of appetite; or
  • rash.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report vaccine side effects to the US Department of Health and Human Services at 1-800-822-7967.

What other drugs will affect this vaccine?

Before receiving this vaccine, tell your vaccination provider about all other vaccines you have recently received.

Also tell the vaccination provider if you have recently received drugs or treatments that can weaken the immune system, including:

  • an oral, nasal, inhaled, or injectable steroid medicine;
  • chemotherapy or radiation;
  • medications to treat psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, or other autoimmune disorders; or
  • medicines to treat or prevent organ transplant rejection.

This list is not complete. Other drugs may affect pneumococcal 13-valent conjugate vaccine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.

Where can I get more information?

Your vaccination provider, pharmacist, or doctor can provide more information about this vaccine. Additional information is available from your local health department or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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