Hepatitis B Vaccine
Not all GP clinics in Melbourne stock travel vaccinations, however Yarra Medical stocks a full range of travel vaccines including Hepatitis B vaccine.
The hepatitis B vaccine is the best defence against the hepatitis B disease. It is available as a vaccine that provides immunisation against hepatitis B alone, or as a combination vaccine. Under the National Immunisation Program Schedule, it is free for certain groups of people, including:
- Babies at birth, and at two, four and six months of age
- Premature babies
- Children nine years or younger
- Men who have sex with men
- People living with HIV
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
If you feel you may have been exposed to hepatitis B, you should make an appointment to see us immediately. We may be able to provide you with treatment that can reduce your risk of infection.
Side effects of the hepatitis B vaccine
Side effects of the vaccine can include pain at the site of injection, low-grade fever and, in children, irritability and drowsiness. The side effects are usually mild and do not require specific treatment.
Pregnancy and the hepatitis B vaccine
The hepatitis B vaccine is not recommended for pregnant women or women who are breastfeeding. If you feel you are at increased risk of infection, come in and see us to discuss it further.
What is hepatitis B?
Hepatitis B is an infectious disease caused by the hepatitis B virus. It affects the liver and is transmitted by exposure to infectious blood or body fluids.
Hepatitis B symptoms
Many people will show no symptoms, while some may experience nausea, jaundice (yellow skin and eyes), dark urine and abdominal pain. Rarely does hepatitis B result in death. Children infected under the age of five rarely show symptoms but are at a higher risk of developing chronic hepatitis B, which can lead to liver failure and cancer late in life. Mothers infected with hepatitis B can pass the virus on to their baby through the womb or during labour. It is important, therefore, that you make sure you are immunised before becoming pregnant.
For more information please view the Better Health website.
For information on other vaccines, see also: