Contraindications to Receiving Pneumonia Vaccines
Any patient who has had a known allergy to any of the pneumococcal vaccines or has had an allergic reaction to the diphtheria toxoid vaccination should not receive the PCV13 vaccination. Please make sure to speak with your healthcare provider about any known allergies to ensure that you are not allergic to any of the components used to create the vaccine.
Patients who have an active infection should wait until they recover before obtaining the vaccination. Because of the limited research completed on the safety of the PCV13 vaccination during pregnancy, it should be avoided during this time if possible. The PPSV23 vaccine should not be given if the patient has experienced an allergic reaction to any of the components used to construct the vaccine, or has had an allergic reaction to any pneumococcal vaccine prior. Those patients who are actively sick should also refrain from receiving the vaccine until they recover if possible. Avoid this vaccination during pregnancy, as there has not been adequate research performed to determine its safety.
Efficacy of the Pneumonia Vaccinations
There have been numerous studies conducted that have indicated the efficacy of both these vaccines. The PCV13 (Prevnar 13) vaccine was found to protect approximately 75 out of every 100 adults age 65 or older against invasive pneumococcal disease; and approximately 45 out of every 100 adults age 65 or older against pneumococcal pneumonia serotypes present within this vaccine. The PPSV23 vaccine was found to protect between 50-85 out of every 100 healthy adults age 65 or older against pneumococcal invasive disease caused by the serotypes in the vaccine.
Possible Side Effects of the Pneumonia Vaccinations
As with any vaccination, there are always risks associated; however, in most cases only mild symptoms present. With that being said, it is imperative to be aware of the mild and severe side effects that can present post vaccination with the PPSV23 and the PCV13.
Possible side effects from the Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV13) may include, but are not limited to: redness, swelling, pain or tenderness surrounding the injection site; fever, diminished appetite, fatigue, headache, chills, irritability. Make sure you speak with your physician before receiving any other vaccination at the same time as the PCV13 to ensure that there are not contraindications that may result in cross-reactions.
The Pneumococcal Polysaccharide Vaccine (PPSV23) may cause the same mild symptoms as the PCV13, including but not limited to: redness, pain at the injection site, fever and muscle aches. It is also imperative to remember that there is a potential for allergic or anaphylactic reactions; and patients should be monitored for symptoms that indicate this severity of a reaction, including: swelling of the lips, face, tongue, difficulty breathing, rash, and/or chest pain.