Yellow fever vaccine is a live vaccine containing weakened, live yellow fever virus and it is given as a single shot. One dose provides lifelong protection for most people. This vaccine is the only cure for yellow fever.
Yellow fever is a serious disease caused by the yellow fever virus. This virus is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito.
There is no medicine to treat or cure this disease. The vast majority of people infected with the yellow fever will either have no signs or will have mild symptoms and fully recover. Some people, however, will develop severe disease.
Yellow fever symptoms and signs include:
- Fever and chills that appear suddenly
- Headache, back pain, or general aches and pains
- Vomiting or nausea
Yellow fever symptoms that can be more serious include:
- Jaundice (yellow skin or eyes)
- Bleeding at many locations on the body
- Failure of the liver, kidneys, or other organs
Avoiding mosquito bites is another method of preventing yellow fever in addition to vaccination:
- Apply insect repellent.
- Put on long sleeves and long pants.
- Remain in spaces with screens or air conditioning.
People are typically exposed to the yellow fever virus through the bite of an infected Aedes or Haemagogus species mosquito. By feeding on infected primates (human or non-human), mosquitoes pick up the virus and can subsequently spread it to other primates. Mosquitoes can transmit the yellow fever virus to people who are sick with it up to 5 days after the fever starts.
The yellow fever vaccination is advised for:
- Those between the ages of 9 months and 59 who are visiting or residing in regions where the yellow fever virus is active, as well as those who are visiting a nation where entry requires proof of immunization.
- Personnel working in labs who might be exposed to the virus that causes yellow fever.
People with minor illnesses, such as a cold, may be vaccinated. People who are moderately or severely ill should usually wait until they recover before getting yellow fever vaccine.
Describe to your vaccine provider if the recipient has:
- Ever experienced a serious, life-threatening adverse reaction after receiving the yellow fever vaccine.
- Possess a compromised immune system.
- Has had their thymus removed or received a thymus disease diagnosis.
- Is pregnant
- Has had any additional vaccinations during the last 4 weeks.