This vaccine is used to help prevent varicella virus infection (commonly known as chickenpox). Chickenpox is a common childhood illness, but can cause more serious illnesses in people who have not yet had either chickenpox or this vaccine. Serious (rarely fatal) problems (such as pneumonia and inflammation of the liver or brain) may rarely occur from this infection, and first-time infections in adults may be very severe. It may also cause a very serious brain/liver condition called Reyes syndrome in children or teenagers. If you are infected while pregnant, your unborn infant may be harmed. Vaccination during childhood may help prevent this infection and the problems that can occur.The virus in this vaccine is alive, but it has been weakened (attenuated) and so it has a decreased ability to cause illness. It works by helping the body produce immunity (protection) that will prevent you from getting chickenpox, or will lessen the seriousness of the infection. As with any vaccine, it may not fully protect everyone who receives it. People who get chickenpox after getting the vaccine usually have mild cases with fewer blisters, fewer fevers, and faster recoveries.The vaccine is recommended for children 12 months and older and adults who have not had chickenpox or received a varicella vaccination before.
How to use Varivax VACCINE Vial
This vaccine is given by injection by a health care professional. Depending on the brand, it may be given either under the skin or into the muscle of the upper arm.
Depending on the brand, children aged 12 months to 12 years usually receive 1 or 2 doses. Teenagers 13 years and older and adults usually receive 2 doses 4 to 8 weeks apart. Closely follow the vaccination schedule provided by the health care professional.
Rarely, some people have symptoms such as fainting, dizziness, vision changes, or ringing in the ears just after getting a vaccine injection. Tell your health care professional right away if you have any of these symptoms. Sitting or lying down may help, since these symptoms usually don't last long.
Remember that this medication has been prescribed because your health care professional 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 health care professional.
Contact the health care professional 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 receiving varicella virus vaccine, tell your health care professional if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients (such as neomycin, gelatin), which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your health care professional for more details.
Before using this vaccine, tell your health care professional your medical history, especially of: illness with a high fever over 101 degrees F (38 degrees C), immune system disorders (such as due to HIV infection, certain cancers such as leukemia/lymphoma, cancer or radiation treatment), untreated tuberculosis (TB) infection.
There is a small risk that you may expose others to infection with chickenpox for up to 6 weeks after you have been vaccinated. If you develop a rash after getting the vaccine, you should avoid being in the same room with people with immune system problems, pregnant women who have not had chickenpox, children/partners of mothers who have not had chickenpox, and newborn babies born at less than 28 weeks of pregnancy until the rash has dried and crusted over.
This vaccine must not be used during pregnancy. There is some risk that it may harm an unborn baby. If you have been vaccinated with varicella virus vaccine, you should not become pregnant for at least 3 months after the vaccination. Discuss the possible risks with your health care professional.
It is unknown if the varicella virus in this vaccine passes into breast milk. Consult your health care professional before breast-feeding.
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 health care professional. 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: drugs that weaken the immune system (including cyclosporine, tacrolimus, cancer chemotherapy, corticosteroids such as prednisone), certain antiviral drugs (such as acyclovir, famciclovir, and valacyclovir).
Postpone vaccination with varicella vaccine for at least 5 months if you have received a blood transfusion or other blood products (such as immune globulin, varicella zoster immune globulin). You may not develop enough antibodies to protect you from infection.
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. If you miss an appointment, contact the health care professional for advice.
Different brands of this medication have different storage needs. Check the product package for instructions on how to store your brand, or ask your pharmacist. Protect from light. 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.
Varivax (PF) 1,350 unit/0.5 mL subcutaneous suspensionColor: colorlessShape: Imprint:
This medicine is a colorless, clear, vial
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CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.