Bulletin of the World Health Organization
Print version ISSN 0042-9686
JEENA, Prakash M.; CHHAGAN, Meera K.; TOPLEY, Janet and COOVADIA, Hoosen M.. Safety of the intradermal Copenhagen 1331 BCG vaccine in neonates in Durban, South Africa. Bull World Health Organ [online]. 2001, vol.79, n.4, pp. 337-343. ISSN 0042-9686. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0042-96862001000400011.
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the safety of the intradermal Copenhagen BCG vaccine in neonates at different levels of delivery and neonatal units of the Durban Functional Region and surrounding regions. METHODS: A prospective study was carried out over a two-year period between July 1997 and June 1999. All neonates who had been vaccinated with the intradermal vaccine were evaluated at immunization clinics six weeks after immunization, or earlier if adverse effects occurred. FINDINGS: In total, 9763 neonates were examined: in 95.4% the vaccination scar had healed and 1.5% had no visible scar. Adverse events occurred in 3.1%. The proportion of neonates with no visible vaccination scars decreased over the study period, as did the number with adverse events. The lowest rate of adverse events and the highest rates of healed vaccination scars were seen in the tertiary hospital and regional and district hospitals that were in close proximity to the academic centre involved in this study. CONCLUSION: In the study sites, the transition from the percutaneous to intradermal route of administration of BCG vaccine was successful and took place without incurring unacceptably high rates of adverse events. To minimize adverse events, however, it is essential to continue training health personnel involved in implementing intradermal BCG vaccination programmes.
Keywords : Tuberculosis, Pulmonary [prevention and control]; BCG vaccine [administration and dosage]; BCG vaccine [adverse effects]; Injections, Intradermal [adverse effects]; Infant, Newborn; Prospective studies; South Africa.