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Re-vaccination of 421 children with a past history of an adverse vaccine reaction in a special immunisation service
  1. Michael Gold,
  2. Helen Goodwin,
  3. Sue Botham,
  4. Margaret Burgess,
  5. Margot Nash,
  6. Ann Kempe
  1. South Australian Immunisation Coordination Unit, Communicable Disease Control Branch, Department of Human Services, PO Box 6, Rundle Mall, Adelaide 5000, South Australia
  1. Dr Gold email: mgold{at}


BACKGROUND In Australia an adverse event following immunisation (AEFI), with the exception of anaphylaxis and encephalopathy, is no longer considered an absolute contraindication to continuing vaccination with the suspect vaccine. Despite these recommendations there is a paucity of information on the re-vaccination of such children.

AIMS To describe the re-vaccination of a large number of children with a past history of an AEFI.

METHODS A review of children attending special immunisation services in three Australian tertiary care paediatric centres.

RESULTS During the review 970 children attended of whom 469 had experienced a past AEFI. Of these, 293 had experienced minor while 176 children had experienced significant neurological or allergic reactions. The majority (421/469) were re-vaccinated, with only one child having a significant neurological event; this was transient and resolved spontaneously.

CONCLUSIONS Re-vaccination of children who have a past history of an AEFI appears safe. A special immunisation service should be part of a comprehensive immunisation programme.

  • immunisation
  • adverse event following immunisation
  • adverse vaccine reactions

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