Vaccinations and Antibiotics
The UK have now started giving vulnerable people the vaccine, If you have not yet received a letter from the NHS regarding this please speak with your GP
Staying well with Sickle Cell Disease
This leaflet provides information and advice on vaccinations for patients with sickle cell disease. If you have any questions or concerns, please speak to your sickle cell doctors or specialist nurse.
Why do I need vaccinations?
The spleen is a small organ on the left side of your abdomen. It forms part of your immune system and produces cells that protect you from infections. In the majority of people with sickle cell disease, the spleen stops functioning during childhood making them more susceptible to severe infections (such as meningitis and pneumonia). For these reasons, it is strongly recommended that everyone with sickle cell disease receive certain vaccinations, to help protect you from infections.
Recommended vaccines for people with SCD
It is recommended that all patients with sickle cell disease have the vaccinations below (in addition to those recommended as part of the routine vaccination programme in the UK). Children with SCD should have all the regular childhood vaccinations recommended as per the NHS Childhood Immunisation Schedule, plus a few extras. Your health visitor will be able to inform you of the recommended routine immunisations schedule for your child.
This can also be found on the NHS England web site at the following link:
The extra vaccinations recommended for people with SCD are:
• Influenza vaccine – given every year from 6 months of age
• Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (sometimes called Prevenar) – A pneumococcal vaccine which is included in the routine vaccination schedule but two additional doses are given before & after the child’s first birthday
• Pneumococcal Polysaccharide Vaccine (sometimes called Pneumovax) – A pneumococcal vaccine given at age 2 years and then every 5 years
• Meningococcal vaccines (Meningococcal ACWY and Meningococcal B, although Men B vaccination is now included in the NHS Childhood Immunisation Schedule for children)
• Hepatitis B vaccination from 1 month of age (part of the childhood vaccination programme for children at increased risk)
Some adults and some children with SCD may not have had the vaccines mentioned in the childhood vaccination programme for reasons such as age at diagnosis and /or differences in schedules of other countries. You should discuss this with your haematologist or haematology nurse so that you can be brought up to date with any vaccinations you may have missed.
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