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Meningococcal Vaccination in India


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Meningitis is the inflammation of the protective membranes (meninges) that surround the brain and spinal cord. It is most commonly caused by a bacterial or viral infection, although it can also be caused by certain fungi or parasites.

Bacterial meningitis is usually more severe and can be life-threatening if not promptly treated. The most common bacteria that cause meningitis are Neisseria meningitidis (meningococcus), Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus), and Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib). Bacterial meningitis can spread from person to person through respiratory droplets or direct contact with an infected individual.

Meningitis caused due to N. meningitidis (meningococcus) bacteria is known as meningococcal disease. Meningococcal is a fast progressing, serious and potentially life-threatening condition.

Vaccination is the best way to prevent meningococcal disease.

Meningococcal Vaccination schedule

* Meningococcal vaccine is recommended for certain populations including international travellers, during outbreaks, students going abroad for higher education and travellers to Haj and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Meningococcal Vaccination for children in India

The schedule typically involves a primary series of two doses, with the first dose given at around 9 to 12 months of age and the second dose administered after an interval of 3 months. If the vaccine is opted after 2 years of age, a single dose of meningococcal vaccine is recommended.

Meningococcal Vaccination for adults in India

Adults who have not received the meningococcal vaccine in childhood, can consider getting vaccinated. The vaccination schedule typically involves a single dose for most adults, although some individuals with ongoing increased risk may require additional booster doses.
Meningococcal vaccine is recommended for certain populations including international travellers, during outbreaks, students going abroad for higher education, travellers to Haj and Sub-Saharan Africa.

IdealMissed Meningococcal Vaccination?

It’s never too late to get vaccinated. Opt for Catch-up Vaccination!

Children, adolescents and adults above 2 years of age who have missed taking the vaccine and want to be protected against meningococcal disease can take a single dose of vaccination.

Cost of Meningococcal vaccination in India

The cost of Meningococcal vaccination depends on factors such as the type of vaccine, brand, manufacturer, applicable taxes and the vaccination service provider. On an average, the cost of Meningococcal vaccination ranges between Rs 4000 to Rs 6000 for one dose. It's best to check with your vaccination provider to get an accurate and updated estimate of the cost.

Meningococcal vaccination at home in India

Vaccination at home offers a convenient, accessible and safe way to protect you and your family from shingles infection. It allows individuals to receive the vaccine in a familiar environment, reducing potential anxiety or discomfort associated with visiting a clinic. Home vaccination not only saves time and effort, it also minimizes exposure to potential infections in crowded healthcare settings. INVC vaccine experts can help you with availability and scheduling of meningococcal vaccine at home in India.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Meningococcal disease is caused by the Neisseria meningitidis bacteria. There are several different serogroups of bacteria, including serogroups A, B, C, W, X, and Y that can cause infections in humans. Meningococcal is a fast progressing, serious and potentially life-threatening condition.

Meningococcal disease is transmitted through close contact with respiratory and throat secretions of an infected person. It can spread through coughing, sneezing, or direct contact with saliva.

The incubation period for meningococcal disease, which is the time from exposure to the bacteria to the onset of symptoms, is relatively short with non-specific symptoms. Meningococcal disease may turn serious and require hospitalization in less than 24 hours. In some cases, incubation period can range from 2 to 10 days or longer.

Meningitis is characterized by inflammation of the protective membranes covering the brain and spinal cord. It can lead to symptoms such as severe headache, fever, neck stiffness, sensitivity to light (photophobia), confusion, vomiting and rash. Infants may show symptoms like irritability, poor feeding, and a bulging fontanelle (soft spot on the head).

Meningococcal meningitis can be a serious and potentially life-threatening condition. The severity of meningitis can vary depending on the cause (viral, bacterial, or fungal) and individual factors such as age and overall health. Bacterial meningitis is generally more severe than viral meningitis. In bacterial meningitis, symptoms can progress rapidly, leading to seizures, coma, and even death if left untreated. Complications of meningitis can include brain damage, hearing loss, learning disabilities, and long-term neurological problems. Bacterial meningitis can also cause septicemia (bloodstream infection), which can further increase the severity of the illness.
Prompt medical attention is crucial for the diagnosis and treatment of meningitis. Early diagnosis and appropriate treatment can greatly improve the outcome and reduce the risk of complications.

Yes, there are treatments available for meningitis, but the specific approach depends on the cause of the infection (viral, bacterial, or fungal).
Most cases of viral meningitis are mild and resolve without specific treatment. Supportive care is usually recommended to relieve symptoms, such as rest, fluids, and over-the-counter pain relievers for fever and headache. Severe cases may require hospitalization for closer monitoring and supportive measures.
Bacterial meningitis is a medical emergency and requires immediate medical attention. It is typically treated with antibiotics administered intravenously (IV). The specific choice of antibiotics depends on the type of bacteria causing the infection, and it is important to start treatment as soon as possible to reduce the risk of complications. Other supportive measures, such as corticosteroids to reduce inflammation and fluids to maintain hydration, may also be used.
Fungal meningitis is less common but is treated with antifungal medications, usually given intravenously. The specific antifungal drug and duration of treatment depend on the type of fungus causing the infection.

Yes, it can be prevented through Vaccination and by practicing good hygiene to reduce the risk of bacterial transmission. Vaccination is the most effective and proactive approach to prevention, especially for individuals at higher risk due to age, medical conditions, or travel plans.

There are different types of meningococcal vaccines available targeting various serogroups of Neisseria meningitidis. These include:

  • Meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MCV): These vaccines protect against specific serogroups, including A, C, W, and Y. They are recommended for children, adolescents, young adults, and individuals at increased risk due to certain medical conditions or travel to high-risk areas.

Meningococcal B vaccines (MenB): These vaccines target serogroup B and might be considered for specific situations, such as outbreaks or for individuals at increased risk.

Meningococcal ACWY (MenACWY) vaccine or simply MCV4 vaccine protecting against 4 serogroups are available in India. It protects against the most common serogroups causing disease in India namely meningococcal A and C. Men B Vaccine is not licensed in India as of now.

Yes, the meningococcal vaccine is generally safe and well-tolerated. Like any vaccine, it can have mild side effects such as soreness at the injection site or a low-grade fever. Serious side effects are rare.

The effectiveness of meningococcal vaccines varies depending on the specific vaccine type and the serogroup of the Neisseria meningitidis bacteria being targeted.
Meningococcal conjugate vaccines (MenACWY) have been shown to be highly effective in preventing meningococcal disease caused by serogroups A, C, W, and Y. These vaccines provide long-lasting immunity and are highly effective in inducing protective antibody responses. Studies have demonstrated high vaccine efficacy, ranging from 85% to over 90% in preventing invasive meningococcal disease.

You can get the meningococcal vaccination by making an appointment with your doctor. Alternatively, you can schedule an appointment at your nearest INVC Vaccination centre or request a home visit by the INVC Vaccination team to receive the vaccine at your convenience.

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