Hepatitis A Vaccine
The hepatitis A vaccine is made from an inactive virus and is quite safe. In general, there are few side effects. The most common side effect is soreness at or around the injection site. Other side effects include:
- Mild headache
- Loss of appetite (among children)
- Feeling tired.
These side effects usually begin three to five days after the vaccination and may last one to two days.
However, like any medicine, the hepatitis A vaccine may cause serious problems, such as an allergic reaction, which may appear within a few minutes or hours after the shot. This occurs only rarely, but if you believe you are having a reaction to the vaccine, you should call your doctor or nurse right away. Some warning signs of a serious allergic reaction include the following:
- High fever
- Changes in behavior
- Difficulty breathing
- Hoarse voice or wheezing
- Pale skin
- Weakness or dizziness
- A fast heartbeat.
Twinrix® is a vaccine for both hepatitis A and hepatitis B. It combines two vaccines that have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) -- Havrix® for hepatitis A and Engerix-B® for hepatitis B.
This combination vaccine protects individuals 18 years of age or older against diseases caused by these hepatitis viruses. It is recommended for travelers whose occupation or behavior puts them at high risk for exposure to the hepatitis B virus or who are visiting countries with a high or intermediate rate of both viruses.