Meningitis B – Bexsero
What is it?
Bexsero is a vaccine licensed to be given to children from 2 months of age to help protect against disease caused by the Neisseria meningitides group B bacteria. These bacteria can cause serious and sometimes life-threatening infections such as meningitis and sepsis.
No of doses
2 doses 2/12 apart and booster at 12 months
1 dose when aged between 10-12 months and a booster >12 months, 2/12 after 1st dose
12 months and older
2 doses, 2/12 apart.
The schedule ranges from 2-3 doses at set intervals depending on the childs age.
Cost Per Dose
€150.00 Per Vaccine*
Like all vaccines, this vaccine can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.
Very common side effects (>1 in 10 people) pain/tenderness/redness/swelling at the injection site, fever (≥38ºC), loss of appetite, painful joints, skin rash (children aged 12 to 23 months) (uncommon after booster),sleepiness, feeling irritable, unusual crying, vomiting, diarrhoea, headache
Common (these may affect up to 1 in 10 people) - skin rash (infants and children 2 to 10 years of age)
Uncommon (these may affect up to 1 in 100 people) high fever (≥40°C), seizures (including febrile seizures), vomiting (after booster), dry skin, paleness (rare after booster)
Rare (these may affect up to 1 in 1,000 people) - Kawasaki disease which may include symptoms such as fever that lasts for more than five days, associated with a skin rash on the trunk of the body, and sometimes followed by a peeling of the skin on the hands and fingers, swollen glands in the neck, red eyes, lips, throat and tongue - Itchy rash, skin rash
Adolescents (from 11 years of age) and adults
Very common (these may affect more than 1 in 10 people) - pain at the injection site resulting in inability to perform normal daily activity - painful muscles and joints - nausea - generally feeling unwell - headache
Bexsero and paracetamol use
Fever is a common side effect following Bexsero vaccination. Paracetamol can reduce fever. We would recommend that you purchase some paracetamol liquid(calpol) suitable for children prior to your appointment. Your nurse will recommend how this should be given. NIAC recommends that 3 doses of paracetamol are given after the 2 and 4 month Men B vaccines routinely.
Dosage and timing of infant paracetamol suspension (120mg/5ml) for use after primary Men B vaccinations (usually at two and four months of age
Age of baby Up to 6 months (usually at 2 and 4 months)
Dose 1 One 2.5ml (60mg) dose as soon as possible after vaccination
Dose 2 One 2.5ml (60mg) dose 4-6 hours after first dose
Dose 3 One 2.5ml (60mg) dose 4-6 hours after second dose
No vaccine is 100% effective against meningitis. You should still be vigilant for symptoms of meningitis which include:
- a very high fever with cold hands and feet
- agitation but not wanting to be touched
- continuous crying
- overly sleepy/difficult to rouse
- confusion/lack of responsiveness
- a blotchy red rash that does not fade when you roll a glass over it
It is important to note that not everyone will get all of the above symptoms.
If you notice any of the symptoms of meningitis seek medical help immediately.