Prevnar 13

Generic Name: pneumococcal 13-valent conjugate vaccine (NOO moe KOK al 13-VAY lent KON joo gate VAX een)
Brand Name: Prevnar 13

What is pneumococcal 13-valent conjugate vaccine?

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

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

Pneumococcal 13-valent vaccine works by exposing you to a small amount of the bacteria or a protein from the bacteria, which causes the body to develop immunity to the disease. This vaccine will not treat an active infection that has already developed in the body.

Pneumococcal 13-valent vaccine is for use in children from 6 weeks to 5 years old, and in adults who are 50 and older.

Becoming infected with pneumococcal disease (such as pneumonia or meningitis) 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 extremely low.

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

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

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

In a child older than 6 months who has not yet received this vaccine, the first dose can be given any time from the age of 7 months through 5 years (before the 6th birthday).

If the child is less than 1 year old at the time of the first shot, he or she will need 2 booster doses. If the child is 12 to 23 months old at the time of the first shot, he or she will need 1 booster dose. A child who is 2 years or older at the time of the first shot may need only the one shot and no booster doses.

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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 the health department of the state you live in.

Keep track of any and all side effects your child has after receiving this vaccine. When the child receives a booster dose, you will need to tell the doctor if the previous shot caused any side effects.

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.

Becoming infected with pneumococcal disease (such as pneumonia or meningitis) 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 extremely low.

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

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

Keep track of any and all side effects your child has after receiving this vaccine. When the child receives a booster dose, you will need to tell the doctor if the previous shot caused any side effects.

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

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

To make sure you or your child can safely receive this vaccine, tell your doctor if you or your child have any of these other conditions:

  • a bleeding or blood clotting disorder such as hemophilia or easy bruising; or

  • a weak immune system caused by disease, bone marrow transplant, or by using certain medicines or receiving cancer treatments.

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.

How is this vaccine given?

This vaccine is injected into a muscle. You will receive this injection in a doctor's office or clinic setting.

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

The first injection should be given no earlier than 6 weeks of age. Allow at least 2 months to pass between injections.

If your child is older than 6 months, he or she can still receive this vaccine on the following schedule:

  • Age 7-11 months: two injections at least 4 weeks apart, followed by a third injection after the child turns 1 year (at least 2 months after the second injection);

  • Age 12-23 months: two injections at least 2 months apart;

  • Age 24 months to 5 years (before the 6th birthday): one injection.

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 the health department of the state you live in.

Your doctor may recommend treating fever and pain with an aspirin-free pain reliever such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil, and others) when the shot is given and for the next 24 hours. Follow the label directions or your doctor's instructions about how much of this medicine to give your child.

It is especially important to prevent fever from occurring in a child who has a seizure disorder such as epilepsy.

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 doctor if your child will miss a booster dose or gets behind schedule. The next dose should be given as soon as possible. There is no need to start over.

Be sure your child receives all recommended doses of this vaccine. If your child does not receive the full series of vaccines, he or she may not be fully protected against the 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.

This vaccine side effects

Your child should not receive a booster vaccine if he or she had a life-threatening allergic reaction after the first shot.

Keep track of any and all side effects your child has after receiving this vaccine. When the child receives a booster dose, you will need to tell the doctor if the previous shot caused any side effects.

Get emergency medical help if your child has any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you or your child has a serious side effect such as:

  • high fever (103 degrees or higher);

  • seizure (convulsions);

  • wheezing, trouble breathing;

  • severe stomach pain, severe vomiting or diarrhea;

  • easy bruising or bleeding; or

  • severe pain, itching, irritation, or skin changes where the shot was given.

Less serious side effects include

  • crying, fussiness;

  • headache, tired feeling;

  • muscle or joint pain;

  • drowsiness, sleeping more or less than usual;

  • mild redness, swelling, tenderness, or a hard lump where the shot was given;

  • loss of appetite, mild vomiting or diarrhea;

  • low fever (102 degrees or less), chills; or

  • mild skin 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.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

What other drugs will affect this vaccine?

Before receiving this vaccine, tell the doctor about all other vaccines you or your child have recently received.

Also tell the doctor if you or your child 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, such as azathioprine (Imuran), etanercept (Enbrel), leflunomide (Arava), and others; or

  • medicines to treat or prevent organ transplant rejection, such as basiliximab (Simulect), cyclosporine (Sandimmune, Neoral, Gengraf), muromonab CD3 (Orthoclone), mycophenolate mofetil (CellCept), sirolimus (Rapamune), or tacrolimus (Prograf).

If you are using any of these medications, you may not be able to receive the vaccine, or may need to wait until the other treatments are finished.

There may be other drugs that can interact with pneumococcal 13-valent vaccine. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

More about Prevnar 13 (pneumococcal 13-valent vaccine)

Consumer resources

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Where can I get more information?

  • Your doctor or pharmacist 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.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 4.01. Revision Date: 2012-01-16, 2:38:19 AM.

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