This vaccine decreases the risk of a streptococcus pneumoniae infection, which can cause ear infections, pneumonia, meningitis and blood infections.
Streptococcus pneumoniae are bacteria that can cause mild to severe infections. Some of the infections this bacteria can cause include:
There are different types of pneumococcal bacteria. The pneumococcal vaccines protect against the types that cause the most pneumococcal disease.
There are two types of pneumococcal vaccines.
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that healthy children get the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine at age two months, four months, six months and twelve through fifteen months of age. Children over the age of two with certain risk factors should receive the pneumococcal conjugate and pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccines. Risk factors include:
Talk to your child's healthcare provider to see if your child is at high risk.
If your child has a moderate to severe illness, check with your healthcare provider before he or she receives the vaccine.
Contact your healthcare provider if your child is not up to date on their vaccines. Here is a list of questions you can ask about the pneumococcal vaccine.
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