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HBIG is made from blood and contains antibodies to hepatitis B. It gives fast protection but is not long lasting.
When HBIG is given, a hepatitis B vaccine series is started so that the body can make its own antibodies for long lasting protection.
HBIG may be offered when there is a high risk that an unprotected person may have had contact with the hepatitis B virus (e.g., baby born to mother with hepatitis B infection, needle stick injury).
People need 1 dose of HBIG as soon as possible after contact with the virus. The size of the dose depends on the person’s body weight.
HBIG and a dose of hepatitis B vaccine given within 24 hours after birth are 85% to 95% effective in preventing hepatitis B in babies born to mothers with hepatitis B infection.
HBIG and hepatitis B vaccine are very effective when given within 7 days after contact with an infected person’s blood or 14 days after sexual contact.
HBIG is one of the safest blood products available. Canadian Blood Services carefully screens donors and tests all blood collected. The blood of donors is not used if the donor has known risk factors or tests positive for an infectious disease. HBIG is treated with heat and chemicals to kill germs that might be present. The risk of getting an infection from HBIG is very small.
HBIG is given at the hospital to babies born to mothers with hepatitis B infection. If you think you have been in contact with the hepatitis B virus, call Health Link at 811. If HBIG and hepatitis B vaccine are needed, they will be given at your local public health office or hospital.
It is important to finish all doses of hepatitis B vaccine and any follow-up blood tests as recommended by your healthcare provider.
Reactions to HBIG are usually mild and go away in a few days. They may include:
Hives and general swelling may occur.
It is important to stay for 15 minutes after the HBIG is given because people can have a rare but serious allergic reaction (anaphylaxis). If anaphylaxis happens, you will be given medicine to treat the symptoms.
Unusual reactions can happen. Call Health Link at 811 to report any unusual reactions.
Talk to your healthcare provider before having HBIG if you:
Anyone can get hepatitis B—almost 1 out of 3 people who have it do not have any risk factors. However, people who have the highest risk are those who:
Current as of: December 11, 2018
Author: Immunization Program, Alberta Health Services
This material is not a substitute for the advice of a qualified health professional. This material is intended for general information only and is provided on an "as is", "where is" basis. Although reasonable efforts were made to confirm the accuracy of the information, Alberta Health Services does not make any representation or warranty, express, implied or statutory, as to the accuracy, reliability, completeness, applicability or fitness for a particular purpose of such information. Alberta Health Services expressly disclaims all liability for the use of these materials, and for any claims, actions, demands or suits arising from such use.