What is pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine?
Pneumococcal disease is a serious disease caused by a bacteria. Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPV) exposes the individual to a small dose of the bacteria (or a protein from the bacteria) and causes the body to develop immunity to the disease. Pneumococcal infection can cause ear infection, sinus infection, pneumonia, blood infection (bacteremia), and meningitis (infection of the covering of the brain). About 1 out of every 20 people who get pneumococcal pneumonia dies from it, as do about 2 out of every 10 who get bacteremia, and 3 out of 10 who get meningitis. Pneumococcal disease kills more people in the United States every year than all other vaccine-preventable diseases combined. PPV (adult, 23-valent) is recommended for: all adults 65 years of age and older; anyone over 2 years of age who has long-term health problems such as sickle cell disease; heart disease; lung disease; alcoholism; diabetes; cirrhosis; or leaks of cerebrospinal fluid; anyone over 2 years of age who has