Pneumococcal (PPV) vaccine

Pneumococcal infections are caused by bacteria and can lead to pneumonia, blood poisoning (sepsis) and meningitis. At their worst, they can cause permanent brain damage, and sometimes death.

The pneumococcal vaccine also known as the pneumonia vaccine, protects against serious and potentially fatal infections.

The vaccine is offered at your GP surgery in the arm or thigh.

Anyone can get a pneumococcal infection but some people are at higher risk of serious illness and are recommended to have the vaccination at their GP surgery.

These risk groups include:

  • babies – two vaccines one at 12 weeks old and one at a year old
  • adults aged 65 or over – one vaccination
  • children and adults with certain long-term health conditions have one vaccination
  • had your spleen removed, your spleen does not work properly, or you're at risk of your spleen not working properly in future (for example, if you have coeliac disease)
  • a long-term respiratory disease, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • heart disease, such as congenital heart disease
  • chronic kidney disease
  • chronic liver disease, such as liver cirrhosis
  • diabetes
  • a suppressed immune system caused by a health condition, such as HIV
  • a suppressed immune system caused by medicines, such as chemotherapy or steroid tablets
  • a cochlear implant (a hearing device) – Action on Hearing Loss has more information about cochlear implants
  • had a leak of cerebrospinal fluid (the clear fluid that surrounds the brain and spine) – this could be the result of an accident or surgery

Article provided by NHS

See original information on the NHS website.