This vaccine is used to help prevent serious, sometimes fatal, infections caused by a certain bacteria (Bacillus anthracis) in people who may be exposed to the bacteria (such as military personnel, laboratory workers who handle the bacteria Bacillus anthracis). It may also be used along with antibiotics to prevent getting the infection after being exposed to the bacteria.
This vaccine contains parts from Bacillus anthracis. It works by causing the body to produce its own protection (antibodies) against the bacteria.
This vaccine is given by injection by a health care professional. For preventing the infection before being exposed to the bacteria, it is given into a muscle as directed by your doctor, usually as a series of 3 doses (1 and 6 months after the first dose), followed by booster shots at 12 and 18 months after the first dose. It may also be given under the skin for certain people (such as people with clotting disorders, people taking "blood thinners"), although this may increase the risk of side effects. When given under the skin, this vaccine is given as directed by your doctor, usually as a series of 4 doses (2 weeks, 4 weeks, and 6 months after the first dose), followed by booster shots at 12 and 18 months after the first dose.
You will need a yearly booster dose if you still remain at risk for anthrax. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
For preventing the infection after being exposed to the bacteria, it is given under the skin as directed by your doctor, usually as a series of 3 doses (2 and 4 weeks after the first dose).
Follow the dosing schedule closely for the vaccine to be most effective. To help you remember, mark your calendar to keep track of when to receive your next dose.
Pain/redness/swelling at the injection site, limited arm movement, muscle ache, headache, or tiredness may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Infrequently, temporary symptoms such as fainting/dizziness/lightheadedness, vision changes, numbness/tingling, or seizure-like movements have happened after vaccine injections. Tell your health care provider right away if you have any of these symptoms soon after receiving an injection. Sitting or lying down may relieve symptoms.
Remember that your health care professional has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
Contact the doctor for medical advice about side effects. The following numbers do not provide medical advice, but in the US you may report side effects to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) at 1-800-822-7967. In Canada, you may call the Vaccine Safety Section at Public Health Agency of Canada at 1-866-844-0018.
Before you receive this vaccine, tell the health care professional if you are allergic to it; or to latex; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before receiving this vaccination, tell your health care professional your medical history, especially of: current fever/illness, immune system problems (such as HIV infection), bleeding disorders (such as hemophilia, thrombocytopenia).
This vaccine is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It may harm an unborn baby. Consult your doctor for more details.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
Some products that may interact with this vaccine include: "blood thinners" (such as warfarin), chemotherapy, corticosteroids (such as prednisone, dexamethasone), drugs that weaken the immune system (such as cyclosporine, tacrolimus).
As with any vaccine, this vaccine may not fully protect everyone who receives it.
It is important that you receive each vaccination as scheduled. Be sure to ask when each dose should be received, and make a note on a calendar to help you remember.
Store in the refrigerator. Do not freeze. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.
Information last revised December 2015. Copyright(c) 2015 First Databank, Inc.
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