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Home > Be Healthy > Health Library > Your Child's First Vaccines: What You Need to Know
The vaccines included on this statement are likely to be given at the same time during infancy and early childhood. There are separate Vaccine Information Statements for other vaccines that are also routinely recommended for young children (measles, mumps, rubella, varicella, rotavirus, influenza, and hepatitis A).
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Vaccines can prevent disease. Most vaccine-preventable diseases are much less common than they used to be, but some of these diseases still occur in the United States. When fewer babies get vaccinated, more babies get sick.
Haemophilus influenzae type b can cause many different kinds of infections. These infections usually affect children under 5 years old. Hib bacteria can cause mild illness, such as ear infections or bronchitis, or they can cause severe illness, such as infections of the bloodstream. Severe Hib infection requires treatment in a hospital and can sometimes be deadly.
Hepatitis B is a liver disease. Acute hepatitis B infection is a short-term illness that can lead to fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, jaundice (yellow skin or eyes, dark urine, clay-colored bowel movements), and pain in the muscles, joints, and stomach. Chronic hepatitis B infection is a long-term illness that is very serious and can lead to liver damage (cirrhosis), liver cancer, and death.
Polio is caused by a poliovirus. Most people infected with a poliovirus have no symptoms, but some people experience sore throat, fever, tiredness, nausea, headache, or stomach pain. A smaller group of people will develop more serious symptoms that affect the brain and spinal cord. In the most severe cases, polio can cause weakness and paralysis (when a person can't move parts of the body) which can lead to permanent disability and, in rare cases, death.
Pneumococcal disease is any illness caused by pneumococcal bacteria. These bacteria can cause pneumonia (infection of the lungs), ear infections, sinus infections, meningitis (infection of the tissue covering the brain and spinal cord), and bacteremia (bloodstream infection). Most pneumococcal infections are mild, but some can result in long-term problems, such as brain damage or hearing loss. Meningitis, bacteremia, and pneumonia caused by pneumococcal disease can be deadly.
Infants and children usually need:
Some children might need fewer or more than the usual number of doses of some vaccines to be fully protected because of their age at vaccination or other circumstances.
Older children, adolescents, and adults with certain health conditions or other risk factors might also be recommended to receive 1 or more doses of some of these vaccines.
These vaccines may be given as stand-alone vaccines, or as part of a combination vaccine (a type of vaccine that combines more than one vaccine together into one shot).
Tell your vaccine provider if the child getting the vaccine:
In some cases, your child's health care provider may decide to postpone vaccination to a future visit.
Children with minor illnesses, such as a cold, may be vaccinated. Children who are moderately or severely ill should usually wait until they recover before being vaccinated.
Your child's health care provider can give you more information.
As with any medicine, there is a very remote chance of a vaccine causing a severe allergic reaction, other serious injury, or death
An allergic reaction could occur after the vaccinated person leaves the clinic. If you see signs of a severe allergic reaction (hives, swelling of the face and throat, difficulty breathing, a fast heartbeat, dizziness, or weakness), call 9-1-1 and get the person to the nearest hospital.
For other signs that concern you, call your health care provider.
Adverse reactions should be reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). Your health care provider will usually file this report, or you can do it yourself. Visit the VAERS website at www.vaers.hhs.gov or call 1-800-822-7967. VAERS is only for reporting reactions, and VAERS staff do not give medical advice.
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. Visit the VICP website at www.hrsa.gov/vaccinecompensation or call 1-800-338-2382 to learn about the program and about filing a claim. There is a time limit to file a claim for compensation.
Vaccine Information Statement (Interim)
Multi Pediatric Vaccines
42 U.S.C. § 300aa-26
Department of Health and Human Services
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Many Vaccine Information Statements are available in Spanish and other languages. See www.immunize.org/vis.
Muchas hojas de información sobre vacunas están disponibles en español y en otros idiomas. Visite www.immunize.org/vis.
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