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Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine
Alternative namesVaccine - pneumovax; Immunization - pneumovax
DefinitionThis vaccine provides immunization against Streptococcus pneumoniae , a bacterium that frequently causes meningitis and pneumonia in the elderly and in people with chronic illnesses.
It effectively prevents illnesses caused by
in children over 2 years old and adults at risk. Pneumococcal pneumonia accounts for 10 to 25% of all pneumonias.
A single-dose injection is given. One dose is sufficient for most people. However, revaccination is recommended for people over age 65 who received their first dose prior to age 65 and more than 5 years ago.
In addition, people with some of the conditions listed above, especially immunological defects and spleen problems, may need a second dose. This immunization is not effective against pneumococcal diseases in children under 2 years.
There is a different vaccine, the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, which is routinely given to younger children to protect against disease due to
Watch for and be familiar with how to treat minor side effects, such as low-grade fever or tenderness, at the injection site.
CALL THE PRIMARY CARE PROVIDER IF:
Update Date: 7/29/2002Adam Ratner, M.D., Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT