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Health Information For Parents
Haemophilus influenzae type b bacteria (Hib) were the leading cause of meningitis in children younger than 5 years old until the Hib vaccine became available. It also used to be a common cause of infections in the ears, lungs, blood, skin, and joints in children.
The Hib vaccine is given by injection at ages:
Kids ages 15 months or older who are receiving the vaccine for the first time only need one dose.
Children ages 12 months to 59 months (almost 5 years old) may need more doses if their immune systems are weakened due to things like asplenia (when the spleen is missing or not working properly), HIV infection, chemotherapy or radiation treatment, or a stem cell transplant.
The vaccine is not routinely recommended for kids older than 5 unless they have a condition that weakens the immune system and have never been vaccinated.
The vaccine provides long-term protection from Haemophilus influenzae type b. Those who are immunized have protection against Hib meningitis; pneumonia; pericarditis (an infection of the membrane covering the heart); and infections of the blood, bones, and joints caused by the bacteria.
Minor problems — such as redness, swelling, or tenderness where the shot was given — can happen. There is a very small chance of an allergic reaction with any vaccine.
The vaccine is not recommended if your child:
The vaccine may cause mild soreness and redness in the area where the shot was given. For pain and fever, check with your doctor to see if you can give either acetaminophen or ibuprofen, and to find out the appropriate dose.
Immunizations protect kids from many dangerous diseases. Find out what vaccines your child needs to grow up healthy.
Which vaccines does your child need and when? Use this immunization schedule as a handy reference.
Find out what the experts have to say.
Meningitis is treatable, but can be serious. So it’s important to know the symptoms, and get medical care right away if you think that your child has the illness.
If you’re old enough to read this, you’ve probably had most of your shots. But even bigger kids may need a shot once in a while. Find out more about them in this article for kids.
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.
You may be wondering what the deal is with meningitis because you’ve heard frightening stuff about meningitis outbreaks in the news.
If you’re afraid of shots, you’re not alone. Next time your doc asks you to roll up your sleeve, try these tips.
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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