Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine is used to protect you against TB (lung infection known as tuberculosis).
BCG vaccine is to be given either intradermally (into the layer of the skin called dermis) or percutaneously (injection through the skin using a puncture device), depending on the product being used.
Your doctor or nurse will administer the injection for you or for your child.
Do not use this medicine if you ever had an allergic reaction (e.g. rashes, breathlessness, swollen eyes) to BCG vaccine or any of its ingredients.
Alert your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- HIV infection, including infants born to HIV-positive mothers
- cancer e.g. leukaemia (cancer of the blood-forming tissues, including the bone marrow)
- weakened immune system
- active TB (tuberculosis)
- sudden severe illness with fever or skin infection
as BCG vaccine may not be suitable for you.
Do not give BCG vaccine to infants whose mothers have been receiving treatments for immune disorders either during pregnancy or via breastfeeding.
Do not use BCG vaccine with medicines used to treat TB or medicines which may affect your immune system. Please see the section “Can I use this with other medicines?” below for more information.
Inform your doctor if you have been recently vaccinated. Do not receive any vaccinations without first asking your doctor.
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
BCG vaccine may cause any of the following side effects: fever, muscle pain, flu-like symptoms, swelling in the lymph nodes of the neck or armpit and swelling, ulcer or abscess at the injection site.
If you or your child develop rashes, breathlessness, swollen mouth or eyes, inform your doctor immediately. These could be signs of an allergic reaction.
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Do not use BCG vaccine if you are taking any of these medicines:
- anti-inflammatory medicines e.g. prednisone
- medicines for cancer e.g. cisplatin, mercaptopurine
- medicines used in organ transplant or certain immune disorders e.g. tacrolimus, ciclosporin
- medicines used to treat rheumatoid arthritis e.g. adalimumab, infliximab
- medicines used to treat TB e.g. isoniazid, streptomycin, rifampicin, ethambutol
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with BCG vaccine.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Store in the refrigerator, between 2-8 °C. Do not freeze.
Protect from light.