Hepatitis B Vaccine

  • Who Should Not Get Vaccinated?

    You should not get the vaccine if you:

    • Had a life-threatening allergic reaction to baker's yeast or to a previous dose of hepatitis B vaccine
    • Are moderately or severely ill—Wait until you recover to get the vaccine.

  • What Other Ways Can Hepatitis B Be Prevented Besides Vaccination?

    Other than getting the hepatitis B vaccine, the best methods of preventing an HBV infection include:

    • Practicing safe sex
    • Getting a blood test for hepatitis B if you are pregnant
    • Avoiding illegal drugs
    • Not using other people's personal care lis that may have blood on them, such as razors or toothbrushes
    • Considering the risks before getting a tattoo or body piercing
    • Following safety precautions when handling needles or other sharp objects

  • What Happens in the Event of an Outbreak?

    In the event of an outbreak, all susceptible people should be offered the vaccine.

  • What Is Hepatitis B?

    Hepatitis B
    is a disease caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV). This virus attacks the liver. The disease can cause:

    • Lifelong infection
    • Cirrhosis
      of the liver
    • Liver cancer
    • Liver failure
    • Death

    HBV is spread through the blood or other body fluids of an infected person.

    Most hepatitis B infections clear up

    without treatment. Others develop into chronic hepatitis B. This can lead to serious complications, even death.

  • What Are the Risks Associated With the Hepatitis B Vaccine?

    All vaccines are capable of causing serious problems, such as a severe allergic reaction.

    Most people who get the hepatitis B vaccine do not have problems. Some may have mild problems, including soreness where the shot was given and fever.

    Acetaminophen is sometimes given to reduce pain and fever that may occur after getting a vaccine. In infants, the medication may weaken the vaccine's effectiveness. Discuss the risks and benefits of taking acetaminophen with the doctor.

  • What Is the Hepatitis B Vaccine?

    The hepatitis B vaccine is produced by inserting a gene for HBV into yeast. The yeast is grown, harvested, and purified. The vaccine is given as an injection into the muscle. This is usually given in a series of 3-4 shots during a 6-month period.

  • Who Should Get Vaccinated and When?