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Pneumonia vaccine

Karen G

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If you got a pneumonia vaccine last year, did you know that you can get a booster shot this year? Last year I got pneumovax at Walgreens and the pharmacist mentioned something about a booster. When my husband went to his doctor this year she told him to get the booster, so I went back to Walgreens and talked with the pharmacist.

She told me that the two vaccines available are pneumovax and prevnar. Whatever you got last time, get the other one this time. She said prevnar may protect you for 10-20 years. I did so.

I have noticed that this year I haven't gotten a cold, which usually turns into bronchitis, which then usually turns into pneumonia. I think it's working!
 

isisdave

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Well, Karen, it's not a "booster" in the sense that it enhances the immunity given by an earlier vaccine. It protects against a different set of bugs.
There are a whole bunch of different strains of germs that cause "pneumonia", which is just a word that means "lung infection."

Pneumovax protects against 23 of them, and Prevnar against 13 different ones. Prevnar is newer, and is now included in covered "preventive care" for us Geezers (Boomers with Attitude).

Not only is one not a booster for the other, they can actually interfere with each other. You're supposed to wait a year in between. More info here. And they're not 100% effective, although like most vaccines they can help you have a less severe experience with an infection.

And they say you only need each once, but they haven't really been around long enough to know if they remain effective more than ten years. Most vaccines don't. I'll be there'll be an update in a few years.

BTW, I happily had no bad reactions to either one.
 
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Karen G

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Thanks for the extra info! It was very interesting.
 

Icc5

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Exactly

Well, Karen, it's not a "booster" in the sense that it enhances the immunity given by an earlier vaccine. It protects against a different set of bugs.
There are a whole bunch of different strains of germs that cause "pneumonia", which is just a word that means "lung infection."

Pneumovax protects against 23 of them, and Prevnar against 13 different ones. Prevnar is newer, and is now included in covered "preventive care" for us Geezers (Boomers with Attitude).

Not only is one not a booster for the other, they can actually interfere with each other. You're supposed to wait a year in between. More info here. And they're not 100% effective, although like most vaccines they can help you have a less severe experience with an infection.

And they say you only need each once, but they haven't really been around long enough to know if they remain effective more than ten years. Most vaccines don't. I'll be there'll be an update in a few years.

BTW, I happily had no bad reactions to either one.

I was going to write the exact same as I got the first one this year (was recommended as I just turned 65). When I mentioned it to my 93 year old Mom she said how she just got the second shot this year. Six weeks later, on her birthday she got pneumonia and over a month later she is still recovering after being in the hospital with it for 3 days.
 

bogey21

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I got them both, the first one 2 years ago and the second last year, as recommended. At my age (80+) one can never be too careful.

My fear is going to the hospital for something else and coming down with pneumonia. I understand that this is not all that uncommon.

George
 
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