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Meningococcal conjugate vaccine Side Effects

For the Consumer

Applies to meningococcal conjugate vaccine: intramuscular powder for suspension, intramuscular suspension

Other dosage forms:

In addition to its needed effects, some unwanted effects may be caused by meningococcal conjugate vaccine. In the event that any of these side effects do occur, they may require medical attention.

If any of the following side effects occur while taking meningococcal conjugate vaccine, check with your doctor or nurse immediately:

  • Cough
  • difficulty with swallowing
  • dizziness
  • fast heartbeat
  • hives
  • itching
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • shortness of breath
  • skin rash
  • tightness in the chest
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • wheezing
Incidence not known:
  • Inability to move the arms and legs
  • fainting
  • sudden and progressing muscle weakness
  • sudden and severe back pain
  • sudden numbness and weakness in the arms and legs
  • weakness of the muscles in your face

Minor Side Effects

Some of the side effects that can occur with meningococcal conjugate vaccine may not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the medicine during treatment these side effects may go away. Your health care professional may also be able to tell you about ways to reduce or prevent some of these side effects. If any of the following side effects continue, are bothersome or if you have any questions about them, check with your health care professional:

More common:
  • Chills
  • diarrhea
  • difficulty with moving
  • fever
  • general feeling of discomfort or illness
  • hard lump at the injection site
  • headache
  • irritability
  • loss of appetite
  • muscle pain or stiffness
  • pain in the joints
  • pain, redness, or swelling at the injection site
  • sleepiness
  • weight loss
Less common:
  • Vomiting

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to meningococcal conjugate vaccine: intramuscular powder for injection, intramuscular solution


The most common adverse events were injection site pain, irritability, diarrhea, headache, and fatigue.[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Injection site pain (48.1%), injection site redness (16%), injection site induration (11%)
Common (1% to 10%): Injection site swelling, injection site hematoma
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Injection site pruritus
Postmarketing reports: Injection site reaction, injection site cellulitis, extensive swelling of the injected limb (frequently associated with erythema, sometimes involving the adjacent joint or swelling of the entire injected limb)[Ref]

Nervous system

Very common (10% or more): Headache (41.8%), drowsiness (11.2%)
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Dizziness, hypoesthesia
Postmarketing reports: Vasovagal syncope, paresthesia, Guillain-Barre syndrome, vertigo, tonic convulsion, febrile convulsion, vertigo, vestibular disorder, syncope, facial paresis, balance disorder[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Diarrhea (14%), nausea
Common (1% to 10%): Vomiting, gastrointestinal symptoms[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Fatigue (32.3%), malaise (22.3%), fever
Common (1% to 10%): Chills, crying
Postmarketing reports: Asthenia, impaired hearing, ear pain, fall, head injury, body temperature increased[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Rash
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Pruritus
Postmarketing reports: Bullous conditions[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Arthralgia (16%), myalgia
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Pain in extremity
Postmarketing reports: Bone pain[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Irritability (12.2%)
Common (1% to 10%): Insomnia[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Appetite lost
Common (1% to 10%): Anorexia, eating disorder[Ref]


Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Nasopharyngitis
Postmarketing reports: Oropharyngeal pain[Ref]


Postmarketing reports: Hypersensitivity (such as rash, urticaria, pruritus, dyspnea, angioedema) including anaphylaxis[Ref]


Postmarketing reports: Alanine aminotransferase increased[Ref]


Postmarketing reports: Eyelid ptosis[Ref]


1. Cerner Multum, Inc. "UK Summary of Product Characteristics." O 0

2. Cerner Multum, Inc. "Australian Product Information." O 0

3. "Product Information. Menactra (meningococcal conjugate vaccine)." sanofi pasteur, Swiftwater, PA.

Not all side effects for meningococcal conjugate vaccine may be reported. You should always consult a doctor or healthcare professional for medical advice. Side effects can be reported to the FDA here.

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. In addition, the drug information contained herein may be time sensitive and should not be utilized as a reference resource beyond the date hereof. This material does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients, or recommend therapy. This information is a reference resource designed as supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill , knowledge, and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate safety, effectiveness, or appropriateness for any given patient. does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of materials provided. 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 substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.