Merck Statement on CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices' Recommendation for Pneumococcal Vaccination in Immunocompromised Adults
WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J., June 20, 2012 – Merck (NYSE: MRK), known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, today provided the following statement regarding the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP)'s updated recommendation for pneumococcal vaccine as a two vaccine regimen in adults with immunocompromising conditions, functional or anatomic asplenia, cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) leaks or cochlear implants.
“Merck supports today's ACIP recommendation for the use of PNEUMOVAX 23 as part of the regimen in these individuals," said Mark Feinberg, M.D., Ph.D., chief public health and science officer, Merck Vaccines. "In addition to this updated recommendation, it is important for clinicians to continue to focus on implementing the ACIP's long-standing recommendation for use of only PNEUMOVAX 23 to help protect all adults aged 65 and older, as well as adults 19 and older with certain other chronic medical conditions, such as diabetes and COPD."
PNEUMOVAX® 23 (Pneumococcal Vaccine Polyvalent) is a vaccine indicated for active immunization for the prevention of pneumococcal disease caused by the 23 serotypes contained in the vaccine (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6B, 7F, 8, 9N, 9V, 10A, 11A, 12F, 14, 15B, 17F, 18C, 19F, 19A, 20, 22F, 23F, and 33F) and is approved for use in people 50 years of age or older and people aged two years and older who are at increased risk for pneumococcal disease. PNEUMOVAX 23 will not prevent disease caused by capsular types of pneumococcus other than those contained in the vaccine.
PNEUMOVAX 23 is not to be administered to individuals with a history of a hypersensitivity reaction to any component of the vaccine.
At today's meeting, the CDC also released epidemiological data on pneumococcal disease in adults with immunocompromising conditions. These data show that the 11 unique serotypes covered in PNEUMOVAX 23 accounted for 21 percent of invasive pneumococcal disease in these individuals and the 23 serotypes collectively accounted for more than 70 percent of disease. PNEUMOVAX 23 is the only vaccine available in the United States indicated to prevent pneumococcal disease caused by 23 serotypes of pneumococcal bacteria.
According to the CDC’s 2010 Adult NHIS (National Health Interview Survey), at least one third of people aged 65 years and older have not received the recommended dose of PNEUMOVAX 23, and at least 80 percent of the ACIP-recommended 19-64 age at-risk population has not been vaccinated, indicating a need to continue to improve vaccination coverage in these individuals.
Select Safety Information about PNEUMOVAX 23 (Pneumococcal
Use caution and appropriate care in administering PNEUMOVAX 23 to individuals with severely compromised cardiovascular and/or pulmonary function in whom a systemic reaction would pose a significant risk.
The most common adverse reactions, reported in >10 percent of subjects vaccinated with PNEUMOVAX 23 in clinical trials, were: injection-site pain/soreness/tenderness, injection-site swelling/induration, headache, injection-site erythema, asthenia and fatigue, and myalgia.
Persons who are immunocompromised, including persons receiving immunosuppressive therapy, may have a diminished response to PNEUMOVAX 23.
PNEUMOVAX 23 may not be effective in preventing pneumococcal meningitis in patients who have chronic cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leakage resulting from congenital lesions, skull fractures, or neurosurgical procedures.
Routine revaccination of immunocompetent persons previously vaccinated with a PNEUMOVAX 23 is not recommended.
Vaccination with PNEUMOVAX 23 may not offer 100 percent protection from pneumococcal infection.
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Posted: June 2012