Pneumonia is a lung infection that can lead to trouble in breathing, coughing, and slight fever.

People who suffer from pneumonia exhibit the symptoms of fever, cough, and troubled breathing. In order to prevent pneumonia, it is always advisable to stay away from people who are sick.

Though many adults are at risk for this disease, there are various vaccines that can prevent the deadly disease. You can consult with your healthcare professional to inquire about which vaccination is best for you.

Every year, thousands of adults succumb to death because of this fatal and infectious disease. Children and older people are usually the victims of this disease. Pneumococcal disease causes severe infections in the lungs, lining of the brain, blood stream, and spinal cord, and the best way to restrict pneumonia in adults is to get vaccinated.

Pneumococcal pneumonia vaccine
This vaccine is available to prevent pneumonia in adults. One shot of this vaccine is good for at least 5 years of protection. The vaccine is usually prescribed for people who are older than 65 years of age. It is also for those who have chronic diseases and serious, long-term health problems. Pneumococcal vaccination is also suitable for people who have weak immune systems. People suffering from HIV/AIDS, asthma, cancer, and removed or damaged spleens will also benefit from this vaccine.

PCV13 protects victims from 13 strains of pneumococcal bacteria. It also provides protection against illnesses like bacteremia and meningitis. PCV13 provides protection against pneumonia. These highly recommended vaccines are safe, with no serious complications. The few mild side effects of this vaccine are arm swelling and soreness, but nothing serious.

Prevnar 13
PCV13 or pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, such as Prevnar 13, is also recommended for children younger than 5 years old, along with adults over 65 years of age. PCV13 is also recommended for those with sickle cell disease, anatomic or functional asplenia, chronic renal failure, cerebrospinal fluid leaks, leukemia, generalized malignancy, Hodgkin’s disease, multiple myeloma, solid organ transplant, cochlear implant, etc.

Pneumovax refers to a 23-valent PPSV23, i.e., pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine. This is prescribed for use in adults who are over 65 years of age. It is also recommended for adults who are at higher risk of pneumococcal disease. PPSV23 is usually prescribed for adults between 19 and 64 years of age who have asthma or who smoke cigarettes. This vaccination is also recommended for those who have chronic cardiovascular diseases such as hypertension and congestive heart failure. This vaccine is also recommended for those who are addicted to alcohol, have chronic liver disease, diabetes mellitus, chronic pulmonary disease, etc. This polysaccharide vaccine was the first pneumococcal vaccine; it was licensed in 1977.

Adults who are older than 65 years of age and have not previously received the PCV13 vaccination should get a dose of PCV13 followed by a gap of 6 to 12 months, and then a dose of PPSV23.

Adults over 19 years of age with no previous vaccination should take a dose of PCV13 and then continue with the recommended dose of PPSV23.
People who have had a life-threatening allergic reaction should consult with a doctor before taking the vaccination.


Since 2001, Dr. Alexander G. Salerno has led Salerno Medical Associates in East Orange, New Jersey. Dr. Alexander Salerno focuses largely on urban communities and on delivering patient education about both medical and behavioral health issues.