hepatitis A and hepatitis B (recombinant) vaccine (Twinrix)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP
    Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP

    Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP

    Dr. Balentine received his undergraduate degree from McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland. He attended medical school at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine graduating in1983. He completed his internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Philadelphia and his Emergency Medicine residency at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center in the Bronx, where he served as chief resident.

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Safe and effective use of hepatitis A/B vaccine in patients younger than 18 years of age has not been established.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Hepatitis A/B vaccine vaccines should not be used with medications and therapies that suppress the immune system such as adalimumab (Humira), belimumab (Benlysta), cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune), azathioprine (Imuran), irradiation, and high doses of steroids because suppressing the immune system reduces the effectiveness of hepatitis A/B vaccine.

PREGNANCY: There are no adequate studies done on hepatitis A/B vaccine to determine safe and effective use in pregnant women. Hepatitis A/B vaccine should be given to pregnant women only if clearly needed.

NURSING MOTHERS: It is not known whether hepatitis A/B vaccine enters breast milk; therefore, it is best to be cautious before using it in mothers who are breastfeeding.

SIDE EFFECTS: Side effects of hepatitis A/B vaccine are injection site soreness and pain, headache, fatigue, redness, diarrhea, nausea, and fainting. The tip caps of pre-filled syringes may contain latex which can cause allergic reactions in latex-sensitive people. Serious allergic reactions, abnormal heart beats, and hair loss have also been reported.

REFERENCE:FDA Prescribing Information.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/20/2014
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