A member asked:

Why does my child need a hepatitis b vaccine if he is not yet at risk of contracting the disease?

16 doctors weighed in across 7 answers
Dr. Scott Tomaine answered

Specializes in Pediatrics

Dangerous disease: Newborns are at risk of hepatits b if the mom is infected and doesn't know it. Some people are silent carriers of this disease. I recommend it at birth even if mom tests negative because it is a safe, effective vaccine against a very bad disease, which causes liver cancer and cirrhosis. It is a series of three shots, and it is required for school attendance.

Answered 9/28/2016

6.7k views

Thank
Dr. Marcus Degraw answered

Specializes in Pediatrics

Life time risk of 5%: Overall lifetime risk of contracting hepatitis b is approaching 5% and higher for some people and in some locations. In addition, shots work far better in younger people and even better in infants, thus the majority of shots being given at this age bracket. Even teenaged patients are ancient when it comes to immunologic response to vaccines and this is the main reason to immunize at a young age.

Answered 1/19/2013

6.7k views

Thank
Dr. Marc Grella answered

Specializes in Pediatrics

Safe and effective: Hepatitis b is a serious disease; it can lead to liver cancer and cirrhosis. Expectant mothers are tested for hep b during pregnancy but they may become infected after testing is done. To assure a baby never gets this disease, hep b vaccine is used at birth. The vaccine is safe and it works. In addition, we never think our kids are "at risk" of getting an "adult" disease; until they have it.

Answered 12/27/2014

6.6k views

Thank
Dr. Zeda Amaya answered

Specializes in Pediatrics

Risk is ever-present: As protective as we parents try to be, certain risks are ever-present. Since we don't have the proverbial crystal ball to determine all risks, prevention is best. Who knows if our children will inadvertently be exposed to infected blood products that can transmit the hep b virus? The vaccine sets up the body's defense before infection occurs.Thankfully the vaccine is proven safe and effective!

Answered 9/28/2016

6.6k views

Thank
Dr. Anatoly Belilovsky answered

Specializes in Pediatrics

Hep B vaccine was...: ...Originally tested in countries where most people were infected at birth, then went on to infect their own children at their birth, and died young of liver cancer. The vaccine worked extremely well and safely. Once we knew this, there seemed to be no reason to wait longer.

Answered 1/19/2013

6.6k views

Thank
Dr. Cornelia Franz answered

Specializes in Pediatrics

He doesn't: While hepatitis is a serious disease, the hepatitis vaccine, in my opinion, is not necessary in children with no risk factors. If mom had prenatal care and is hepatitis negative, and the baby will not be in a high risk environment, I do not see the need to give it right away. It can be done later if necessary. You may want to do more research on your own.

Answered 7/25/2019

6.6k views

Thank
Dr. Robert Kwok answered

Specializes in Pediatrics

At risk from birth: A child is at risk of catching hepatitis b, from the day he is born. So, the vaccine is usually started on that day. Hepatitis b virus is in blood and bodily fluids, and is very contagious. Almost all people who are carriers of hepatitis b "look normal", so one cannot tell who is carrying the virus, among the general population.

Answered 1/19/2013

6.6k views

Thank

Related Questions

A member asked:

Hepatitis b vaccine/how is it given?

3 doctors weighed in across 2 answers

A member asked:

How much is a hepatitis b vaccine now?

5 doctors weighed in across 2 answers

A member asked:

Is hepatitis b recombinant vaccine safe?

A doctor has provided 1 answer

A member asked:

Can the hepatitis b vaccine ever expire?

A doctor has provided 1 answer

A member asked:

Can hepatitis b vaccine cause hepatitis b?

A doctor has provided 1 answer

Online Primary Care Doctors Accepting New Patients

$44 video appointments available today with a membership as low as $15/month

Book a Video Appointment
Ask your question
Didn't find what you're looking for?

90,000 U.S. doctors in 147 specialties are here to answer your questions or offer you advice, prescriptions, and more.

Ask your question

Meet your new favorite doctor
...