n CME : Your SA Journal of CPD - The varicella zoster vaccine : main topic




Although chicken pox is regarded as a trivial infection of childhood, it can have serious consequences in immunocompromised patients, all adolescents and adults, and in a minority of immunocompetent children. <br>For HIV infection, at present, a CD4 percentage > 25% is recommended before vaccination. <br>The varicella vaccine, consisting of live attenuated virus, is safe and effective. <br>It can be given to infants from 9 months of age, but is probably better to give at 12 months. <br>All susceptible adults and adolescents should be immunised, especially where the risk of contact is high (health care and day care workers and parents with young children). <br>The vaccine is effective as postexposure prophylaxis if given within 72 hours of exposure.


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