Vaccines Adults Should Consider

While most people know that children get rounds of vaccines to protect them against various illnesses as they grow, many do not know that adults may need shots, too. CBS News Health Correspondent Dr. Emily Senay reports.

The fall season is not just the time for flu shots, but a chance for adults to get other vaccines they may need.

The following is a list of vaccines that adults should consider taking as a precaution against various illnesses. People should consult their regular doctors before getting shots. Some patients who have certain medical conditions or who might have a reaction to treatments especially need to get the advice of their physicians.

  • Pneumococcal Vaccine: This is for people over 65, or for those who have chronic medical conditions. Talk to your doctor about this preventative measure against pneumococcal pneumonia, a serious and sometimes deadly respiratory infection.
  • Chicken Pox Vaccine: Adolescents or young adults who have never had chicken pox may want to consider getting this vaccine.
  • Tetanus Vaccine: Most people get tetanus shots when they are kids, but what many adults don't realize is that a booster shot is needed every ten years. If you have a cut and can't remember when you last had a booster shot, emergency room workers usually go ahead and give it to you.

    Here are other vaccines to be considered in special cases:

  • Measles-Mumps-Rubella Vaccine: If you are a college student or are traveling to countries where these diseases are prevalent, you may want to consider a booster.
  • Hepatitis A Vaccine: Travelers, food service workers, and people with chronic liver disease all may want to consider this vaccine.
  • Hepatitis B Vaccine: You should get the Hepatitis B vaccine if you are sexually active and have multiple partners.
Women who are pregnant should not receive any of these vaccines. A woman going through a pre-conception screening can have a doctor check to see if she is immune to chicken pox and measles-mumps-rubella. If she is not immune, the physician may want to administer boosters and the patient should avoid conception for the following three months.

Side effects to these vaccines are the same for adults as for children. Soreness and redness may develop where the shot is administered. At worst, patients may get a mild fever.

Reported by Dr. Emily Senay