Febrile reaction after vaccination

Slightly elevated body temperature or fever may occur after any vaccine. Fever is usually a sign that the body's defence system is working. The typical time for the onset of fever varies by vaccine type
  • non-live vaccines: 1-2 days after vaccination
  • live attenuated vaccines: 5-12 days after vaccination

Fever usually drops in a couple of days.

High fever is rarely detected after children’s combination vaccines.

  • After the 5-in-1 vaccine, fever of more than 39 degrees is found in less than one per cent.
  • After the MMR vaccine, 5–15 per cent experience fever.
  • After the varicella a vaccine, around 15 per cent experience fever.
  • After the MMRV vaccine, around 20 per cent experience fever.

Treating the febrile reaction

Provide guidance on using antipyretic medication. Paracetamol is the primary medicine for a young child. 

Naproxen or ibuprofen can be used especially if the child also has a local reaction in the injected limb.

Follow-up vaccinations

Give follow-up vaccinations as normal. 

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