Pentaxim: Painless pentavalent vaccine
Pentaxim vaccine as its name implies is a hexavalent vaccine. It protects against diseases diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, IPV, and Haemophilus influenzae type b. It contains purified pertussis toxin and cell components so it is a relatively painless vaccine. As indicated in the above table it contains diphtheria toxoid 30 LF, tetanus toxoid 10 Lf, pertussis toxoid 25 mcg and filamentous haemagglutinin 25 mcg, Poliovirus inactivated type 1 40 DU, poliovirus inactivated type 2 8 DU, poliovirus inactivated type 3 32 DU, Haemophilus influenzae type b polysaccharide 12 mcg in the conjugated form to tetanus toxoid, other inactive ingredients include aluminum hydroxide 0.6 mg, Buffers include disodium hydrogen phosphate, potassium hydrogen phosphate, essential amino acids, trometol, saccharose. It contains water to make a total volume of 0.5 ml. Effectively it is the DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine.
|Quantity per 0.5 ml
|Bordetella pertussis antigens Pertussis toxoid Filamentous haemagglutinin
|25 mcg 25 mcg
|Poliovirus inactivated Type 1 (Mahoney) Type 2 (MEF-1) Type 3 (Saukett)
|40 DU 8 DU 32 DU
|Haemophilus influenzae type b polysaccharide (PRP) Conjugated to tetanus toxoid protein (PRP-T)
|12 mcg 22-36 mcg
|Aluminium hydroxide (hydrated)
|Buffers Disodium hydrogen phosphate Potassium hydrogen phosphate Essential amino acids Trometamol Saccharose
|1.528 mg 1.552 mg 1.115 mg 0.1515 mg 10.625 mg
|Water for injection
|Up to 0.5 ml
Table of Contents
How is this Pentaxim available?
Pentaxim vaccine is available in injection liquid form. It is a single-dose packet. It comes in a pre-filled syringe. Generally, a needle for intramuscular injection is included in the packet. The liquid for injection looks hazy and colorless normally.
How is Pentaxim vaccine stored?
Pentaxim vaccine is stored at 2-8 degrees Celsius. The temperature range should be strictly maintained with the help of a cold chain at all stages of transport and storage. The vaccine should not be accidentally frozen. If accidentally frozen, the vaccine should be discarded and not used.
How is Pentaxim vaccine given?
Pentaxim vaccine is given by injection. The dose of this vaccine is 0.5 ml liquid. The injection is given with a pre-filled syringe attached to the needle. It is generally given on the anterolateral aspect of the thigh. It should be given with all safety injection precaution protocols. The disposable are discarded as per bio-medical waste management protocols.
At what age Pentaxim vaccine is given?
Pentaxim vaccine is given at age 6-10-14 weeks with Hepatitis B vaccine but generally, Hexavalent Hexaxim vaccine is preferred at this age followed by a booster of DTaP-HiB-IPV at 18 months. 18 months booster is given by Pentaxim vaccine.
Otherwise booster at 18 months is done with pentaxim vaccine and at 5 years Tetraxim can be used.
Safety with other vaccine:
This vaccine should not be mixed with other medicines or vaccines while injecting.
A separate syringe should be used to inject and separate the location of the body preferably a separate limb.
How does Pentaxim vaccine works?
Pentaxim vaccine when given as indicated doses and schedule, it protects from diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio and Haemophilus influenzae type b. It contains inactivated killed components of all these bacteria or viruses.
It is an active method of immunization. When injected into the child the immune system of the child recognizes the antigens as foreign antigens and an immune response is induced against the antigens.
It contains conjugated Hamophilus polysaccharide antigens. Conjugated forms help to boost the immune response and also the long term immunity is induced.
The pertussis components help to enhance the immune response against diphtheria and tetanus. Additionally aluminum salt in it helps the immune system to recognize the antigens more efficiently. This vaccine is safe below the age of 7 years. This vaccine contains all 3 poliovirus strains in an inactivated form which when injected are very efficient in inducing immunity.
What are side effects of Pentaxim vaccine?
Pentaxim vaccine contains acellular pertussis components in the purified form so the side effects are relatively less with the Pentaxim vaccine when compared to DPT whole-cell killed pertussis-containing vaccine.
Very common side effects are:
1. Loss of appetite may occur after vaccination but usually improves by its own.
2. Crying may last for few hour usually subsides by its on.
3. Sleepiness may occur after vaccination in some children may subside with time by its own.
4. Vomitting may occur after vaccination. Mostly subsides by its own. It can be managed with increasing the frequency of the feeding and if needed oral medication like ondansetron.
5. Pain, redness and swelling at injection site can occur may last for 1-3 days, usually less severe than whole cell pertussis containing vaccines. It can be easily managed at home with oral medicine like paracetamol and local cold fomentation.
7. Fever: May last for 1-3 days. Usually mild to moderate grade. It can be easily managed at home with oral medication like paracetamol.
Common side effects are:
1. Abnormal crying.
2. Diarrhea can be easily managed with increasing frequency of feeding and oral rehydration solution. It usually subsides by its own.
3. Injection site hardness (induration).
Rare side effects are:
1. Allergic/anaphylactic reaction.
2. Lump at injection site.
3. High fever.
Though side effects are there they are usually mild and manageable at home. Fever and pain can be easily managed by oral medicine like paracetamol and local cold fomentation at the injection site. Side effects are much lesser when compared to whole-cell pertussis vaccines and the actual diseases which the vaccine prevents.
Like all other vaccines, this vaccine can very rarely cause an anaphylaxis reaction which can be life-threatening if not managed swiftly. It is suggested to give all the vaccines at the center which is anaphylaxis management ready. Necessary drugs and equipment and a skilled person are available to manage the reaction.
To whom this vaccine should not be given?
This vaccine should not be given to those who are allergic to any of its components.
This vaccine should not be given to those who had got an anaphylactic or severe allergic reaction to a previous dose of the vaccine.
This vaccine is safe for use in age below 6 years.