Prescription onlyNo lower cost generic available

Varivax

(Varicella Vaccine)

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Prevents varicella, also known as chickenpox.

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Prescription onlyNo lower cost generic available

Our pharmacists’ bottom line

Varivax (Varicella Vaccine) is a safe and effective vaccine for the chickenpox.

  • Varivax is very safe. It prevents the chickenpox infection in 70 to 90 percent of vaccinated kids.
  • Getting vaccinated with Varivax decreases the number of days children miss school and parents miss work.
  • There is no thimerosal or other preservatives in Varivax.
  • Most people who get Varivax have no side effects.
  • Children who develop chickenpox after being vaccinated are less contagious than unvaccinated children.
  • After being vaccinated with Varivax (Varicella Vaccine), children still have a 20% chance of getting a mild case of chickenpox (varicella).
  • You may get a rash or feel sore at the site of the injection.
  • Some people have felt tired or fussy after getting Varivax (Varicella Vaccine).
  • Some adults get a mild fever two weeks after receiving Varivax (Varicella Vaccine).
  • Since it's a live vaccine, it can't be used in pregnant or people with a weak immune system. Check with your doctor or pharmacist what'll be best for you.
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Side effects for Varivax (Varicella Vaccine)

From clinical trials of Varicella vaccine / Chicken pox prevention (1 dose) 

  • Injection-site complaintsInjection-site complaints24% for Varicella vaccine vs.0% for placebo
  • Injection-site complaintsInjection-site complaints19% for Varicella vaccine vs.0% for placebo
  • Fever ≥102.0°f (38.9°c) oralFever ≥102.0°f (38.9°c) oral15% for Varicella vaccine vs.0% for placebo
  • Fever ≥100.0°f (37.8°c) oralFever ≥100.0°f (37.8°c) oral10% for Varicella vaccine vs.0% for placebo
  • Varicella-like rash (generalized)Varicella-like rash (generalized)6% for Varicella vaccine vs.0% for placebo
  • Varicella-like rash (generalized)Varicella-like rash (generalized)4% for Varicella vaccine vs.0% for placebo
  • Varicella-like rash (injection site)Varicella-like rash (injection site)3% for Varicella vaccine vs.0% for placebo
  • Varicella-like rash (injection site)Varicella-like rash (injection site)3% for Varicella vaccine vs.0% for placebo

What to expect when you take Varivax (Varicella Vaccine)

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Tips from our pharmacists
  • Having children vaccinated with Proquad (a combination of measles, mumps, rubella and varicella) is recommended, and just as effective as a separate injection of Varivax (Varicella Vaccine).
  • If you are an adolescent or an adult who hasn’t had chickenpox, or live in an area where a lot of people have been vaccinated, it is a very good idea to get the Varivax (Varicella Vaccine).
  • The same virus that causes chickenpox can cause shingles, so consider getting Zostavax (the shingles vaccine) when you turn 60.

Risks and Warnings for Varivax (Varicella Vaccine)

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  • An epinephrine injection should be available for use immediately after receiving Varivax (Varicella Vaccine) because some patients may have an allergic reaction.

Means that some groups have a high risk of experiencing this side effect

Tips from pharmacists and people taking Varivax (Varicella Vaccine)

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The FDA category for this medication is C. It is advised that you: Weigh risks vs. benefits
Pregnancy