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Health Information For Parents
Hepatitis B virus affects the liver. It can cause a mild illness with fever, nausea, vomiting, and jaundice that lasts for a few weeks. Or it can cause a lifelong infection. Lifelong carriers of the virus may get liver problems later, such as cirrhosis (scarred and damaged liver) or liver cancer.
Kids usually get the hepatitis B vaccine (HepB) as a series of 3 shots:
For the first shot:
Anyone can get the vaccine series at any time if they missed it as a baby. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting infected. This includes health care and public safety workers, people with chronic liver or kidney disease, people with HIV infection, and people who inject drugs.
Some kids may need to get vaccinated again later in life. These include children:
The HepB injection usually creates long-term immunity. Most infants who get the HepB series are protected from hepatitis B infection beyond childhood, into their adult years.
Eliminating the risk of infection also decreases risk for cirrhosis of the liver, chronic liver disease, and liver cancer.
Side effects usually are mild, and can include a mild fever and soreness or redness at the injection site. Allergic reactions to the vaccine are rare.
Doctors delay giving the vaccine to babies who weigh less than 4 pounds, 7 ounces (2,000 grams) at birth whose mothers do not have the virus in their blood. The baby will get the first dose at 1 month of age or when the baby is discharged from the hospital.
The vaccine is not recommended if your child:
Your child may have fever, soreness, and some swelling and redness at the shot site. For pain and fever, check with your doctor to see if you can give either acetaminophen or ibuprofen, and to find out the right dose.
Call the doctor if:
A vaccine is another word for what most kids call a shot.
Find out what the experts have to say.
Hepatitis B can move from one person to another through blood and other body fluids. For this reason, people usually get it through unprotected sex or by sharing needles.
Hepatitis, an infectious liver disease, is more contagious than HIV. Find out about the different types of hepatitis.
Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver. Most cases are caused by a virus â either hepatitis A, hepatitis B, or hepatitis C â all of which can be passed to others by someone who is infected.
It’s sneaky, it’s silent, and it can permanently harm your liver. Read this article for more information on hepatitis.
Find out when and why your child needs to get this vaccine.
Missing out on shots puts you at more serious risk than you might think. That one little “ouch” moment protects you from some major health problems.
If you’re afraid of shots, you’re not alone. Next time your doc asks you to roll up your sleeve, try these tips.
Which vaccines does your child need and when? Use this immunization schedule as a handy reference.
Immunizations protect kids from many dangerous diseases. Find out what vaccines your child needs to grow up healthy.
Vaccines help keep kids healthy, but many parents still have questions about them. Get answers here.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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