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HomeAnswersChild Healthrabies vaccineIs there any chance of developing side effects after the preexposure rabies vaccine for my 4-year-old son?

Is there a risk of life-threatening anaphylaxis associated with the preexposure rabies vaccination?

The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Medically reviewed by

iCliniq medical review team

Published At September 19, 2023
Reviewed AtSeptember 19, 2023

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

I wish to give preexposure rabies vaccination to my 4-year-old son for his safety. But I came to know from the internet that the fear of anaphylaxis is always present with every vaccine. Till now, he has received all routine vaccines but has never developed any serious side effects, except sometimes a mild fever or pain at the injection site. Is there any test we can do to ensure that there will not be any serious side effects after the preexposure anti-rabies vaccine? If there is any potential threat to his life due to anaphylaxis caused by the preexposure rabies vaccination, then I will not give it to him. I am unable to make a decision.

Kindly help.

Hello,

Hello,

We welcome you to icliniq family.

I appreciate the confidence you place in me for your healthcare consultation.

I can understand your concern. The very first question is, why do you want to give the pre-exposure anti-rabies vaccine? Do you have unvaccinated pet animals at home? If so, it is better to get those animals vaccinated. If you live in an area with a high population of stray animals and your son frequently comes into contact with them, then it may be necessary. As you mentioned correctly, there is always a chance of side effects with any vaccine. You need to weigh the benefits against the potential side effects. The chances of anaphylaxis due to the anti-rabies vaccine are not very common, especially if your child does not have any known allergies and has received other vaccines without serious side effects. Since you have not mentioned any specific allergic problems with your son, I assume he does not have any known allergies, such as an egg allergy. There are newer vaccines available, such as the human diploid cell vaccine (HDCV), which are considered much safer with very rare side effects. If you decide to proceed with the vaccination, it is recommended to choose the HDCV type. If there are unvaccinated pet animals, it is advisable to get them vaccinated. If there is a high chance of your son being exposed to stray animals, then it is recommended to administer the HDCV vaccine. Your doctor will take care of the process, and usually, they will keep the recipient under observation for at least half an hour after vaccination. So, there is no need to worry.

I hope this has helped you. Please feel free to reach me again, in case of further queries.

Thank you.

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

Thank you for your kind response. There are no pet animals in my home. However, I read on the internet that there is a fear of rabies even if a dog puts its saliva on any broken skin or wound of anyone. So, I thought of keeping my son on the safer side, and that is the reason I considered PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis). He used to eat eggs without any allergies, but he experiences recurrent vomiting after consuming fish. Now, he is even reluctant to the smell of eggs. Is there any chance of anaphylaxis after PrEP if he has these food allergies?

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com

As I mentioned earlier, if there are no pets at home and he is not regularly coming into contact with stray animals, there is no need for the pre-exposure vaccine. The pre-exposure vaccine is recommended for individuals who frequently come into contact with unknown animals, such as veterinary doctors, forest officers, or people who regularly go camping in forests. Regarding his vomiting after eating fish, it could simply be that he does not like it, but it may also be a sign of an allergy. It is advisable to avoid it if possible.

Hope I have helped you. Thank you.

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

Thank you for your prompt reply.

As you mentioned, 'try to avoid.' I did not quite understand it, sir. Did you mean to avoid fish or PrEP?

Hello,

Welcome back to icliniq.com

It is regarding fish only. Regarding anti-rabies vaccine I already gave you the recommendations.

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

Thank you so much for your help.

Does the allergy to fish may be a warning sign that he might develop anaphylaxis after the rabies vaccine?

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com

A person who has an allergy to one thing has a slightly increased chance of having allergies to other things. The fish allergy in your son is still not confirmed. Vomiting may be a sign.

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

Thank you for the reply.

If required in the future, can it be tested whether he has any risk of adverse reactions to the anti-rabies vaccine? I have uploaded his vaccine chart. He has never developed any serious reactions after receiving these vaccines. Does he still have a chance of experiencing anaphylaxis after the rabies vaccination?

Hello,

Welcome back to icliniq.com

He has received all the vaccines without any reaction, so it is unusual. Also, as I mentioned before, the HDCV (human diploid cell culture rabies vaccine) type of anti-rabies vaccine rarely causes reactions.

Hope it helps. Thank you.

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

Sir, sorry for disturbing you. In the worst case scenario, if a baby develops anaphylaxis after receiving the anti-rabies vaccine (ARV), can it be easily managed by doctors in clinics, or does it pose a risk to their life?

Hi,

Sorry for the late reply as it was a working day.

Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening condition, but if immediate care is provided, it can be managed effectively. Is there a specific reason you want to opt for anti-rabies vaccine (ARV)? I have already provided you with all the recommendations for those who require it. Anyway, if you are still confused, I advise you to connect on chat. I will discuss the issue in detail, considering all the possibilities. That may support you in making a decision.

I hope your query got resolved.

Thank you.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Prakash Chandra Girdhar Lal Nagar
Dr. Prakash Chandra Girdhar Lal Nagar

Child Health

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