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Reuters Health Information (2005-06-27): Combined DTaP-HBV and Hib vaccine effective and well tolerated

Public Health

Combined DTaP-HBV and Hib vaccine effective and well tolerated

Last Updated: 2005-06-27 17:06:06 -0400 (Reuters Health)

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Combining the tetravalent diphtheria-tetanus-acellular pertussis-hepatitis B vaccine (DTaP-HBV) with the Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) vaccine as a single injection for infants is safe, immunogenic and well tolerated, according to a study in Italy.

The rate of infants receiving three doses of Hib vaccine is relatively low in Italy, Dr. G. Gabutti, from the University of Ferrara, and colleagues point out in their paper in the May issue of Clinical Drug Investigations. They suggest that combining it with the DTaP-HBV vaccine would simplify the injection schedule and promote better compliance with Hib vaccination.

To be sure that such an approach is immunogenic and not reactogenic, the group recruited 360 healthy infants ages 12 to 16 weeks randomly assigned to either combined injections or injections administered separately. Vaccinations were administered at ages 3, 5 and 11 months.

Following completion of the three-dose vaccination course, > 97% of both groups had seroprotective levels against Hib, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis and hepatitis B.

"Combining the two vaccines did not affect the high level of protection afforded by separate administration of the vaccines," Dr. Gabutti's team writes.

Adverse events were usually mild and transient, resolved without sequelae, and were no more prevalent in the combined-vaccine group than the separate-vaccines group.

Clin Drug Invest 2005;25:315-323.

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