Haemophilus influenzae Type b (Hib) vaccine - what you need to know

Definition

All content below is taken in its entirety from the CDC Hib (Haemophilus Influenzae Type b) Vaccine Information Statement (VIS): www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/hib.pdf.

CDC review information for Hib (Haemophilus Influenzae Type b) VIS:

Content source: National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases

Information

WHY GET VACCINATED?

Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) disease is a serious disease caused by bacteria. It usually affects children under 5 years old. It can also affect adults with certain medical conditions.

Your child can get Hib disease by being around other children or adults who may have the bacteria and not know it. The germs spread from person to person. If the germs stay in the child's nose and throat, the child probably will not get sick. But sometimes the germs spread into the lungs or the bloodstream, and then Hib can cause serious problems. This is called invasive Hib disease.

Before Hib vaccine, Hib disease was the leading cause of bacterial meningitis among children under 5 years old in the United States. Meningitis is an infection of the lining of the brain and spinal cord. It can lead to brain damage and deafness. Hib disease can also cause:

Before Hib vaccine, about 20,000 children in the United States under 5 years old got Hib disease each year, and about 3% to 6% of them died.

Hib vaccine can prevent Hib disease. Since use of Hib vaccine began, the number of cases of invasive Hib disease has decreased by more than 99%. Many more children would get Hib disease if we stopped vaccinating.

Hib VACCINE

Several different brands of Hib vaccine are available. Your child will receive either 3 or 4 doses, depending on which vaccine is used.

Doses of Hib vaccine are usually recommended at these ages:

Hib vaccine may be given at the same time as other vaccines.

Hib vaccine may be given as part of a combination vaccine. Combination vaccines are made when two or more types of vaccine are combined together into a single shot, so that one vaccination can protect against more than one disease.

Children over 5 years old and adults usually do not need Hib vaccine. But it may be recommended for older children or adults with asplenia or sickle cell disease, before surgery to remove the spleen, or following a bone marrow transplant. It may also be recommended for people 5 to 18 years old with HIV. Ask your doctor for details.

Your doctor or the person giving you the vaccine can give you more information.

SOME PEOPLE SHOULD NOT GET THIS VACCINE

Hib vaccine should not be given to infants younger than 6 weeks of age.

A person who has ever had a life-threatening allergic reaction after a previous dose of Hib vaccine, OR has a severe allergy to any part of this vaccine, should not get Hib vaccine. Tell the person giving the vaccine about any severe allergies.

People who are mildly ill can get Hib vaccine. People who are moderately or severely ill should probably wait until they recover. Talk to your healthcare provider if the person getting the vaccine isn't feeling well on the day the shot is scheduled.

RISKS OF A VACCINE REACTION

With any medicine, including vaccines, there is a chance of side effects. These are usually mild and go away on their own. Serious reactions are also possible but are rare.

Most people who get Hib vaccine do not have any problems with it.

Mild problems following Hib vaccine:

These problems are uncommon. If they occur, they usually begin soon after the shot and last 2 or 3 days.

Problems that could happen after any vaccine:

Any medication can cause a severe allergic reaction. Such reactions from a vaccine are very rare, estimated at fewer than 1 in a million doses, and would happen within a few minutes to a few hours after the vaccination.

As with any medicine, there is a very remote chance of a vaccine causing a serious injury or death.

Older children, adolescents, and adults might also experience these problems after any vaccine:

The safety of vaccines is always being monitored. For more information, visit: www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety.

WHAT IF THERE IS A SERIOUS REACTION?

What should I look for?

Look for anything that concerns you, such as signs of a severe allergic reaction, very high fever, or unusual behavior.

Signs of a severe allergic reaction can include hives, swelling of the face and throat, difficulty breathing, a fast heartbeat, dizziness, and weakness. These would usually start a few minutes to a few hours after the vaccination.

What should I do?

VAERS does not give medical advice.

THE NATIONAL VACCINE INJURY COMPENSATION PROGRAM

The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) is a federal program that was created to compensate people who may have been injured by certain vaccines.

Persons who believe they may have been injured by a vaccine can learn about the program and about filing a claim by calling 1-800-338-2382 or visiting the VICP web site at www.benefits.gov/benefits/benefit-details/641. There is a time limit to file a claim for compensation.

HOW CAN I LEARN MORE?

Contact the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):


Review Date: 4/2/2015
Reviewed By: David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

This information should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. © 1997- 2007 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.