Chickenpox Vaccine

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Chickenpox used to be one of the classic childhood diseases. However, it has become much less common since the introduction of the chickenpox vaccine. Dr. Edward Hill tells us about the chickenpox vaccine in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Chickenpox is caused by the varicella-zoster virus. It is very common and spreads very easily. The chickenpox vaccine works very well in preventing the disease.

A small number of people who get the vaccine will still get chickenpox. However, they usually have a milder case than persons who did not receive the vaccine.

Children should receive two doses of the traditional chickenpox vaccine. The first dose should be given when the child is 12 to 15 months old. A second dose should be given when they are 4 to 6 years old.

People 13 and older who have not received the vaccine and who have not had chickenpox should get two doses.

People 13 and older who have had a previous dose and who have not had chickenpox should receive a second dose.

Pregnant women, people with weakened immune systems or who are allergic to the antibiotic neomycin or gelatin and children who are taking aspirin should not get the chickenpox vaccine.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.