Varicella Virus Vaccine Live/Salicylates Interactions

This information is generalized and not intended as specific medical advice. Consult your healthcare professional before taking or discontinuing any drug or commencing any course of treatment.

Medical warning:

Serious. These medicines may interact and cause very harmful effects. Contact your healthcare professional (e.g. doctor or pharmacist) for more information.

How the interaction occurs:

The use of salicylates during natural varicella infection has been associated with the development of a condition called Reye's Syndrome.

What might happen:

The risk of developing Reye's Syndrome may increase. Symptoms of Reye's syndrome include drowsiness, confusion, seizures, coma. In severe cases, Reye's syndrome can result in death.

What you should do about this interaction:

Let your healthcare professionals (e.g. doctor or pharmacist) know if you have been taking any products that contain a salicylate, such as aspirin, before getting varicella vaccination for the prevention of chicken pox. Avoid using any salicylates for six weeks after your vaccination. If any symptoms of Reye's Syndrome develop, contact a healthcare professional immediately.Your healthcare professionals may already be aware of this interaction and may be monitoring you for it. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with them first.

  • 1.Varilrix (varicella virus vaccine, live, attenuated) Canadian prescribing information. GlaxoSmithKline January 10,. 1997.
  • 2.Varivax III (varicella virus vaccine, live, attenuated) Canadian prescribing information. Merck Frosst September 21, 1997.
  • 3.Varivax (varicella vaccine, live) UK summary of product characteristics. Sanofi Pasteur MSD Limited June, 2008.
  • 4.Varivax (varicella virus vaccine live) US prescribing information. Merck & Co., Inc. March, 2008.
  • 5.Zostavax (zoster vaccine live) US prescribing information. Merck & Co., Inc. March, 2018.

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CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.