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Hepatitis B Vaccine

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Hepatitis B Vaccine - What is it for

​Hepatitis B vaccines help to prevent infection caused by the Hepatitis B Virus (HBV).

Hepatitis B can lead to serious liver disease, and is spread by direct contact with blood or other body fluids from an infected person. It can also spread by sharing items such as toothbrushes or razors with an infected person.  A baby whose mother is infected may become infected at birth unless the necessary vaccines are done.

Common symptoms of Hepatitis B include jaundice (yellow skin or eyes), nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and joint pain.

As part of the Singapore National Childhood Immunisation Schedule (NCIS), all children should receive three doses at appropriate intervals.Infants should get their first dose at birth and will usually complete the series by 6 months of age, however sometimes it may take longer than 6 months to complete the series.

As part of the Singapore National Adult Immunisation Schedule (NAIS), adults (18 years or older) who have not been previously vaccinated, or lack evidence of past infection or immunity should receive three doses (the first dose, followed by the second and third dose at one month and six months after the first dose).

Hepatitis B Vaccine - Side Effects, Precautions, and Contraindications

What side effects can Hepatitis B Vaccine cause?

 Common side effects include:

  • Some people may feel faint after the vaccination
    • Sit for 15 minutes to avoid fainting
  • Pain, redness and swelling at the injection site
    • You may place a cold compress over the affected area for relief
    • You may take paracetamol for pain relief
  • Headache and fever
    • You may take paracetamol to treat the headache or fever
  • Fatigue, dizziness, irritability
    • These side effects usually go away on its own

Rare but serious side effects include:

The symptoms of a drug allergy include one or more of the following:

  • Swollen face/eyes/lips/tongue
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Itchy skin rashes over your whole body

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should inform your healthcare professional immediately.

Before taking Hepatitis B Vaccine, what precautions must I follow?

​Inform your healthcare professional if:

  • You are allergic to this vaccine or any of the other ingredients of this vaccine
  • You are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding
  • You are taking any other medications
  • You are currently not feeling well and having a fever
  • You have a history of bleeding disorders
  • You have a weakened immune system e.g. currently undergoing chemotherapy

What food or medicine must I avoid when I take Hepatitis B Vaccine?

Hepatitis B Vaccine - Dosage and How to Use

How should Hepatitis B Vaccine be used?

​It is usually given by injection into a muscle, or sometimes under the skin.

It is given as a series of three doses under the NCIS and the NAIS.

Under the NCIS, the Hepatitis B vaccine may be given on its own as one shot, or in combination with other vaccines (e.g. Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Polio and Hib) as one shot.

A booster dose may be required in certain patients with specific medical conditions such as kidney problems (e.g. on haemodialysis) or a weak immune system.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

What should I do if I overdose?

Hepatitis B Vaccine - Handling and Storage

How should I handle Hepatitis B Vaccine safely?

How should I store Hepatitis B Vaccine?

How should I dispose of Hepatitis B Vaccine safely?

Hepatitis B Vaccine - Additional Information

  • Updated on Monday, May 31, 2021
  • This article is contributed by PSS National Medication Information Workgroup PSS National Medication Information Workgroup

    The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth

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