This vaccine is given to prevent infections caused by Hemophilus influenzae type b bacteria, known as Hib for short. This name is not to be confused with influenza, which is a virus. Hib bacteria grow in the upper airway of children and adults. Most of the time, they cause no symptoms or illnesses.
Hib is one of the recommended childhood vaccines. Depending on the actual vaccine preparation used, a series of shots are usually given at ages: 2 months4 months6 months12 to 15 months
Because there is very little Hib disease in children older than 2, the vaccine is not routinely recommended for children beyond age 5. If a child has never had this vaccine by the age of 15 months, only one shot is given at that time.
A shot of the vaccine is given in the muscle of the thigh or arm. The area is cleaned with an antibacterial swab before the shot.
Professional Guide to Diseases, Sixth Edition. Springhouse: Springhouse Corporation, 1998.
Merck Manual of Medical Information, 2000
Center for Disease Control website