Meningococcal ACWY Vaccines (MenACWY)
What is meningococcal disease?
Meningococcal disease is a serious illness caused by a type of bacteria calledNeisseria meningitidis. It can lead to meningitis (infection of the lining of the brain and spinal cord) and infections of the blood. Meningococcal disease often occurs without warning, even among people who are otherwise healthy.
Meningococcal disease can spread from person to person through close contact (e.g., coughing, kissing) or lengthy contact, especially among people living in the same household. There are at least 12 types of N. meningitidis, called "serogroups." Serogroups A, B, C, W, and Y cause most meningococcal disease.
Anyone can get meningococcal disease but certain people are at increased risk, including:
Even when it is treated, meningococcal disease kills 10 to 15 infected people out of 100. And of those who survive, about 10 to 20 out of every 100 will suffer disabilities such as hearing loss, brain damage, kidney damage, amputations, nervous system problems, or severe scars from skin grafts.
Meningococcal ACWY vaccines can help prevent meningococcal disease caused by serogroups A, C, W, and Y. A different meningococcal vaccine is available to help protect against serogroup B.
What is meningococcal vaccine?
Meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MenACWY) is licensed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for protection against serogroups A, C, W, and Y.
Who should get meningococcal vaccine and when?
Two doses of MenACWY are routinely recommended for adolescents 11 through 18 years of age: the first dose at 11 or 12 years of age, with a booster dose at age 16.
Some adolescents, including those with HIV infection, should receive additional doses. Ask your healthcare provider for more information.
In addition to routine vaccination for adolescents, MenACWY vaccine is also recommended for certain groups of people:
Some people need multiple doses for adequate protection. Ask your healthcare provider about the number and timing of doses, and the need for booster doses.
Who should not get meningococcal vaccine or should wait?
Tell the person who is giving you the vaccine:
What are the risks from meningococcal vaccines?
With any medicine, including vaccines, there is a chance of side effects. These are usually mild and go away on their own within a few days, but serious reactions are also possible.
Mild problems following meningococcal vaccination:
Problems that could happen after any injected vaccine:
What if there is a severe 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-- usually within a few minutes to a few hours after the vaccination.
What should I do?
If you think it is a severe allergic reaction or other emergency that can't wait, call 9-1-1 or get to the nearest hospital. Otherwise, call your doctor.
Afterward, the reaction should be reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). Your doctor should file this report, or you can do it yourself through the VAERS web site athttp://www.vaers.hhs.gov, or by calling1-800-822-7967.
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 calling1-800-338-2382or visiting the VICP website athttp://www.hrsa.gov/vaccinecompensation. There is a time limit to file a claim for compensation.
How can I learn more?
Meningococcal Vaccine Information Statement. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Immunization Program. 8/24/2018.
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.
Selected Revisions: November 15, 2018.
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