Epidemic meningitis is caused by several bacteria, and there is no effective vaccination against all of them. One part of the available vaccinations is a combined immunization effective against 4 types of bacteria (A, C, W135, Y). At the moment there is no effective vaccination available against the B type bacterium in the world.
Two types of the vaccines are known such as polysaccharide and conjugate one.
One type of them (polysaccharide) can only be used above the age of 2. The vaccination takes effect within 10-14 days after receiving it.An at least 3 year-long protection can be achieved in case of children of school age, or young people older than them as well as in case of adults. Nevertheless, in case of children younger than 4 the effectiveness of the antibodies decreases rapidly (2-3 years).
Conjugate vaccinations are more effective than the polysaccharide ones. Therefore, their effectiveness is for a longer period of time.Moreover, the antigen induces antibody response also in case of children younger than 2 years of age, this way conjugate vaccinations can be given to them as well, except for the Menveo vaccine.
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For whom should it be considered?
- Everyone travelling to epidemic territories (primarily Central Africa)
- Those who may get in touch with people suffering from epidemic meningitis
- Those who are suffering from damages of spleen, or it has been removed
- Those who may have got infected by the bacterium during work (microbiologists)
When is it to be given?
- In case of outbreaks of epidemics
- At least 2 weeks prior to travel
When is it contraindicated?
- In case of severe allergic symptoms after receiving vaccination against meningitis
- In case of any other ongoing severe acute illnesses
- It’s only recommended for pregnant women in case of significant possible risk of contagion