Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine for Children: Care Instructions

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Your Care Instructions

The pneumococcal shot (Pneu-C-13) protects against a type of bacteria that causes pneumonia, meningitis, blood infections (sepsis), and ear infections.

All children need three or four doses. Talk with your doctor or public health nurse about when your child needs the shots. If your child does not get the shots at the recommended times, ask about a schedule for catch-up shots.

The shot may cause pain or swelling in the area where the shot is given. It may cause your child to feel sleepy or not feel like eating or cause a fever. These reactions may last 1 to 2 days.

Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.

How can you care for your child at home?

  • Give your child acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) for fever or for pain at the shot area. Read and follow all instructions on the label. Do not give aspirin to anyone younger than 18. It has been linked to Reye syndrome, a serious illness.
  • Do not give a child two or more pain medicines at the same time unless the doctor told you to. Many pain medicines have acetaminophen, which is Tylenol. Too much acetaminophen (Tylenol) can be harmful.
  • Put ice or a cold pack on the sore area for 10 to 20 minutes at a time. Put a thin cloth between the ice and your child's skin.

When should you call for help?

Call 911 anytime you think your child may need emergency care. For example, call if:

  • Your child has symptoms of a severe allergic reaction. These may include:
    • Sudden raised, red areas (hives) all over the body.
    • Swelling of the throat, mouth, lips, or tongue.
    • Trouble breathing.
    • Passing out (losing consciousness). Or your child may feel very light-headed or suddenly feel weak, confused, or restless.
  • Your child has a seizure.

Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • Your child has symptoms of an allergic reaction, such as:
    • A rash or hives (raised, red areas on the skin).
    • Itching.
    • Swelling.
    • Belly pain, nausea, or vomiting.
  • Your child has a high fever.

Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:

  • A mild fever does not go away in 24 hours.
  • Your child does not get better as expected.

Where can you learn more?

Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd

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Current as of: September 24, 2016