Avaxim: Inactivated Hepatitis A vaccine

Avaxim vaccine is used to prevent the Hepatitis A disease. It is vaccine by Sanofi Pasteur India Pvt Ltd. It is inactivated Hepatitis A vaccine.

This vaccine is available in adult and pediatric dosages. Pediatric dosage 0.5 ml contains Hepatitis A virus antigen (HAV) 80 units and hydrated alumunium oxide as adjuvant. Adult dose is 1 ml contains Hepatitis A virus antigen 160 units hydrated aluminium oxide as adjuvant.

Apart from contents given below this vaccine may contain neomycin in small amount. The caution is suggested if the person is allergic neomycin.

Hepatitis A GBM Strain inactivated:
– Cultured on MRC-5 Human diploid cells
– Adsorbed on hydrated Aluminium hydroxide
– Antigen units expressed using an in house reference
80 U
Aluminium Hydroxide0.15 mg
2-phenoxyethanol2.5 mcl
Ethanol anhydrous2.5 mcl
Formaldehyde12.5 mcg
Water for injection0.5 ml
Contents of Avaxim vaccine

How is Avaxim vaccine available?

Avaxim vaccine is available as injection liquid form. It is available as 0.5 ml dose or 1 ml dose. It is available as pre filled syringe without needle. It is available in single dose form. It is packed in opaque box to protect from sunlight.

How is Avaxim vaccine stored?

Avaxim vaccine is stored at 2-8 degree Celsius. The temperature range should be maintained with the help of cold chain. The temperature range should be maintained at all levels of transport and storage. The vaccine should not be frozen. If the vaccine is frozen accidentally it should be discarded and not used for the injection.

How is Avaxim vaccine given?

Avaxim vaccine is given as injection on the antero lateral aspect of thigh in children with needle as intramuscular route. All the safe injection precautions should be followed while giving injection. The disposables should be discarded as per biomedical waste management protocols. The vaccine that has passed expiry should be discarded as per biomedical waste management protocol rules. For those above 18 years 1 ml dose is given. For those below 18 years 0.5 ml dose is needed.

For those who have bleeding disorder this vaccine can be administered subcutaneously and firm pressure is given after the vaccination. The vaccination should be preferably planned after getting the dose of clotting factor in haemophilliacs.

At what age Avaxim vaccine is given?

Avaxim vaccine is given in routine immunization at age 13 months and second dose is given 6 months apart. If some one has missed the dose it should be given. For those above 10 years it is better to do serum HAV antibody test to see whether person has got natural asymptomatic infection before and got protected from the disease. Those adolescents and adults from developed countries who are going to visit countries which are endemic for Hepatitis A should get vaccine before travel.

How does Avaxim vaccine works?

Avaxim vaccine is active form of immunization but it is inactivated vaccine. Avaxim vaccine contains antigen of Hepatitis A virus in inactivated form. When this vaccine is injected to a host the immunity of the host recognizes the antigen on Hepatitis A virus. The immunity is form against this virus and in the process the memory is also formed. When the real infection occurs the immune response is boosted against the infection and protects the person against the disease itself.

Safety with other vaccine:

Avaxim vaccine is safe with most other medicine and no drug interactions were noted. The other vaccine or other drug should not be mixed in same syringe as this vaccine.

Like other inactivated vaccines Avaxim vaccine is considered as safe in pregnant and lactating woman, but the risk benefit ratio should be evaluated by the caregiver.

Concomitant administration of typhoidtetanus and yellow fever vaccine is safe with Avaxim vaccine.

Concomitant administration of Avaxim and serum immunoglobulins does not alter the protective effect of Avaxim vaccine.

What are side effects of Avaxim vaccine?

Avaxim vaccine causes side effect that are generally milder and can be managed at home and does not need hospital admission:

  • Fever is a common side effect after the vaccination. It usually subsides in 1-3 days and can be managed very easily at home with medicine like paracetamol and sponging.
  • Swelling and pain that occurs at the injection site may last for 1-3 days can be managed with paracetamol and local cold compression.
  • Diarrhea and loss of appetite can occur after vaccination and can be managed by oral rehydrating solution.
  • Nausea and vomiting may occur after the vaccination and it can be managed by oral syp ondansetron and oral rehydrating solution.
  • Abdominal pain.
  • Muscular pain and joint pain.
  • Headache and fatigue.
  • Anaphylaxis and allergy is an extremely rare side effect of the vaccine. Like other vaccines, the vaccine should be administered at the center where necessary personnel and drugs, and equipment are available to manage if any reaction occurs

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