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Does the Pneumonia Shot Have Side Effects?

author image Laura Candelaria
Laura Candelaria is a family nurse practitioner and assistant professor of nursing and nutritional science. Her experience includes neonatal and pediatric intensive-care, women's oncology, gynecology, obstetrics, lactation, nutrition and infertility. She has been published in "Nursing Spectrum," "Newsday" and on various websites.
Does the Pneumonia Shot Have Side Effects?
The pneumonia shot does have side effects. Photo Credit vaccine image by Mykola Velychko from Fotolia.com

The pneumonia shot is given for the prevention of illness caused by the Streptococcus pneumoniae bacteria. Pneumococcal infection can cause serious problems, such as pneumonia, which affects the lungs; meningitis, which affects the brain; bacteremia, which is a severe infection in the blood; and possibly death, reports the Mayo Clinic. You should consider vaccination if you are elderly, have a compromised immune system or are a smoker. Parents may consider this vaccination for young children. Speak with your health care provider to determine if you should receive this vaccination. There are some side effects of the pneumonia shot that you should be aware of.

Injection Site Complications

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at least half of all people who receive this vaccination will experience mild side effects, such as pain or redness where the injection was given. You may also develop mild swelling at the affected area. These side effects should diminish within a few days of receiving this vaccination. Ask your physician if acetaminophen or ibuprofen can be used to relieve pain and soreness. A cold compress may be effective at reducing injection site swelling.

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Muscle Pain and Fatigue

You may develop muscle pain and fatigue following vaccination for pneumonia. You may also experience joint pain. This side effect may last for a few days following vaccination. A warm bath, shower, or massage may help alleviate muscle soreness and pain. If pain or soreness becomes severe, ask your health care professional which type of pain medication is safe for you to take.

Fever and Swollen Glands

Fever and swollen glands may occur following vaccination. You may relieve your fever with acetaminophen, as per your doctor's consent. Swollen glands usually appear in the neck area and feel tender to the touch. Fever and swollen glands occur as your body produces the desired immune reaction to the pneumonia vaccine. If these side effects do not diminish within a couple of days contact your health care provider. It is possible that you may have an illness unrelated to your recent vaccination.

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