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Pneumovax 23

Generic Name: pneumococcal polysaccharides vaccine (PPSV), 23-valent (NOO moe KOK al POL ee SAK a rides, 23-VAY lent)
Brand Name: Pneumovax 23
Physician reviewed Pneumovax 23 patient information - includes Pneumovax 23 description, dosage and directions.
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Drug Information:
Pneumococcal disease is a serious infection caused by a bacteria. Pneumococcal bacteria can infect the sinuses and inner ear. It can also infect the lungs, blood, and brain and these conditions can be fatal. Pneumococcal polysacchaRides vaccine (PPSV) is used to prevent infection caused by pneumococcal bacteria. PPSV contains 23 of the most common types of pneumococcal bacteria. PPSV works by exposing you to a small dose of the bacteria or a protein from the bacteria, which causes your body to develop immunity to the disease. PPSV will not treat an active infection that has already developed in the body. Learn more

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Pneumovax 23 Side Effects

Note: This document contains side effect information about pneumococcal 23-polyvalent vaccine. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Pneumovax 23.

For the Consumer

Applies to pneumococcal 23-polyvalent vaccine: injection injectable

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

  • Pain where the shot was given.
  • Redness or swelling where the shot is given.
  • Irritation where the shot is given.
  • Headache.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Muscle pain.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to pneumococcal 23-polyvalent vaccine: injectable solution


The most common adverse events were fever and injection site reactions.


Very common (10% or more): Pain/soreness/tenderness (77.2%), swelling/induration (39.8%), erythema (34.5%)

Common (1% to 10%): Pruritus, ecchymosis

Rare (less than 0.1%): Injection site cellulitis

Postmarketing reports: Warmth at injection site, decreased limb mobility, peripheral edema in injected extremity

Nervous system

Very common (10% or more): Headache (18.1%)

Frequency not reported: Cerebrovascular accident, lumbar radiculopathy

Postmarketing reports: Paresthesia, radiculoneuropathy, Guillain-Barre syndrome, febrile convulsion


Very common (10% or more): Asthenia/fatigue (17.9%)

Common (1% to 10%): Fever

Frequency not reported: Alcohol intoxication

Postmarketing reports: Malaise, increased C-reactive protein


Very common (10% or more): Myalgia (17.3%)

Common (1% to 10%): Chills, neck pain

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Back pain

Postmarketing reports: Arthralgia, arthritis


Common (1% to 10%): Nausea, dyspepsia, diarrhea

Frequency not reported: Ulcerative colitis, pancreatitis

Postmarketing reports: Vomiting


Common (1% to 10%): Upper respiratory infection, pharyngitis


Postmarketing reports: Anaphylactoid reactions, serum sickness, angioneurotic edema


Postmarketing reports: Lymphadenitis, lymphadenopathy, thrombocytopenia in patients with stabilized idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, hemolytic anemia in patients who have had other hematologic disorders, leukocytosis


Postmarketing reports: Cellulitis, rash, urticaria, cellulitis-like reactions, erythema multiforme


Frequency not reported: Angina pectoris, heart failure, chest pain, myocardial infarction resulting in death


Frequency not reported: Edema, diabetes


Frequency not reported: Urinary retention

Editorial References and Review

Medically reviewed by USARx EDITORIAL TEAM Last updated on 1/1/2020.

Source: Drugs.com Pneumovax 23 (www.drugs.com/mtm/pneumovax-23.html).