Haemophilus Influenzae Type B (Hib)

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Haemophilus Influenzae Type B (Hib)

Haemophilus influenzae is a serious disease caused by bacteria. It usually strikes children younger than 5 years old and spreads from person to person. Children and adults may have the bacteria and not know it. If the germs stay in a child's nose and throat, the child probably will not get sick. But sometimes the germs spread into the lungs or the bloodstream, and this is when Hib can cause serious problems.

Hib vaccine

Vaccines are available at Apollo Clinic that can help prevent Haemophilus influenzae type b or Hib disease. The Hib vaccine exposes the individual to a small amount of the bacteria (or to a protein from the bacteria) and causes the body to develop immunity to the disease. This is crucial because Hib can cause:

  • Meningitis - an infection of the brain and spinal cord coverings, which can lead to lasting brain damage and deafness.
  • Pneumonia - severe swelling in the throat, making it hard to breathe; infections of the blood, joints, bone, and covering of the heart.

Who should get a Hib vaccine?

  • It is recommended for all children under the age of 5 years. Doses are recommended at the following ages:
    1. 2 months
    2. 4 months
    3. 6 months (if needed; depend on the brand)
    4. 12 through 15 months
  • Unimmunized older children and adults with certain medical conditions should also get a Hib vaccine

Who should not get it?

  • Anyone who had a life-threatening allergic reaction after a dose of Hib should not get another dose.
  • Children younger than 6 weeks of age should not get Hib vaccine.
  • Those who are moderately or severely ill should usually wait until they recover before getting Hib vaccine.

How is Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine administered?

Your doctor, nurse, or another healthcare provider will administer the Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine as an injection.  

Side effects

Minor problems — such as redness, swelling, or tenderness where the shot was given — can happen.

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