Pcv Vaccine
PCV Vaccine

What is PCV Vaccine: How, Who, When, and Side Effects

Immunization is a way to prevent the spread and transmission of diseases due to viruses and bacteria. One of the vaccines that children should receive is the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV). 

What is PCV Vaccine?

Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) is an immunization to prevent disease due to streptococcus pneumoniae bacterial infection or pneumococcal germs.

Pneumococcal disease is able to affect anyone, but the most vulnerable are children younger than 5 years old and parents who are more than 50 years old.

Pneumococcal germs can cause several diseases, such as pneumonia, inflammation of the lining of the brain (meningitis), and blood infections (bacteremia).

There are 2 types of PCV vaccines that children need to receive, namely

  1. Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13) and
  2. Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23).

PCV13 protects a person from 13 types of pneumococcal bacteria with a conjugation formula, which is a combination of proteins and bacteria to improve protection.

While PPSV23 includes 23 types of bacteria that work with polysaccharide formulas vaccines such as certain bacteria to help the body build protection on those germs.

How pneumococcal conjugate vaccine works?

Both types of PCV immunization, both PCV13 and PPSV23 encourage the body to produce antibodies against pneumococcal bacteria.

Antibodies are proteins that the body produces to neutralize or destroy organisms (living things in the body) that carry toxins. Antibodies protect a person from bacterial infections,

Currently, more than 90 different types of pneumococcal bacteria have been found, but the majority do not cause serious infection problems.

As per the numbers listed on the type of vaccine, PCV13 protects from 13 types of pneumococcal bacteria and PPSV23 protects from 23 types of bacteria.

PCV immunization is able to prevent pneumococcal disease by about 50-70 percent.

Who should get pneumococcal conjugate vaccine?

Pneumococcal disease can affect anyone. However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends this vaccine to be given to:

  • Children under 2 years old
  • Children over 2 years of age with a high risk of pneumococcal disease
  • Older persons over 65 years old
  • Children who have a high risk of pneumococcal disease are children with congenital heart disease, HIV, thalassemia, and children with malignancies who are undergoing chemotherapy, as well as other medical conditions that cause a weakened immune system.

When to give pneumococcal vaccine?

The PCV vaccine can be given to:

  • Infants aged 2-6 months in 3 times the base dose (with a distance of administration between doses for 1 month) and 1 time booster dose (it can be given after 1 year of age).
  • Infants aged 6-11 months who have not been immunized should receive 2 doses (with a distance between doses for 1 month) and 1 booster dose after 1 year of age.

PCV Vaccine Side Effects

Reporting from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, can trigger the emergence of a number of side effects.

Similar to drug consumption, side effects generally occur in mild intensity, and do not trigger the appearance of serious problems.

Here are some side effects after the PCV vaccine that can be experienced by children:

  • Mild fever
  • Redness in the injection area
  • Pain in the injection area
  • Decreased appetite
  • Headache
  • Fussy and keep crying

Don’t worry, because in mild cases, side effects can go away on their own within 2-3 days.

However, more severe side effects may occur. The condition is characterized by a more severe allergic reaction. These are the symptoms that appear:

  • Skin rash
  • Sore throat
  • Increased heart rate
  • Difficulty breathing

More severe allergic reactions are very rare. Reporting from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the condition was only found 1 case in 1 million doses of administration.

So, you should not have to worry about the side effects that can occur, because most are experienced in mild intensity.

If you do not give it, the child is more susceptible to infectious diseases, because his immunity is not protected to the maximum.

Read more:
8 Mild and Serious Vaccine Side Effects


Last Updated on February 10, 2022 Reviewed by Market Health Beauty Team