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Meningococcal vaccination

What are meningococci?

Behind them are bacteria of the type Neisseria meningitidis. Infection can lead to inflammation of the meninges (menigococcal meningitis) or bacterial blood poisoning (so-called meningococcal sepsis). Meningococci are transmitted via respiratory droplets. This means that you can infect them primarily through coughing or sneezing and through direct close contact, for example when kissing.
There are several subgroups of meningococcal bacteria; in Germany, serogroup B is particularly common. Serogroup W predominates in the meningitis belt in Africa and serogroup C predominates in South America.
Meningococcal diseases must be treated as inpatients in hospital as they are almost always severe and often result in complications. Paralysis of the arms or legs, cranial nerve paralysis, seizures and damage to the inner ear, including deafness, are possible.

Who should be vaccinated against meningococci?

In special travel circumstances to risk countries and at certain times of the year (usually in the dry season), a vaccination may be necessary. Special travel circumstances include, for example, deployments as disaster relief workers or medical personnel, on long-term stays, as exchange students, on adventure/backpacking trips or on pilgrimages. The main risk area is the extended, so-called meningitis belt in Africa.

How and when is the meningococcal vaccination carried out and what must be taken into account?

There are three approved vaccines for vaccination against meningococci. All vaccines are inactivated vaccines and must be administered into the muscle.

The vaccine against the serogroup ACWY must be vaccinated once before traveling. A refresh is recommended after 10 years.
Vaccinations against serogroup B must be administered twice, 1 or 6 months apart depending on the vaccine.

Specified side effects include loss of appetite, irritability, headaches, stomach and intestinal problems and fatigue.

Should I get vaccinated against meningococci?

To find out which vaccinations are useful for your planned trip, simply make an appointment for travel medical advice

strong> in one of our Avi Medical practices and discuss it with our team of doctors. The team will tell you what you should consider so that you can be safe and relaxed on your next trip.