Vaccines and Preventable Diseases:
Varicella Vaccine Administration Errors
Information for Health Care Providers
People who got varicella vaccine but should not have because of contraindications, should be monitored for adverse reactions. Any adverse reactions should be reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) at 1-800-822-7967 or through the VAERS Web site.
People who had varicella or a positive serologic test for varicella in the past are less likely to develop serious adverse reactions to the vaccine, unless they have had a prior serious allergic reaction to any component of a vaccine. For more information about potential adverse reactions, see Vaccine Safety and Monitoring.
Pregnant women should not get vaccinated. For more information, see Contraindications and Precautions for Vaccination or Guidelines for Vaccinating Pregnant Women: Varicella. To report administration of VZV-containing vaccines to a pregnant woman, call 1-877-888-4231. See Merck’s website for more information.
If herpes zoster vaccine is given instead of varicella vaccine, this dose should be counted as the first dose of varicella vaccine. A second dose of varicella vaccine should be given at the appropriate time interval after the first dose. For more information, see Routine Vaccination.
Such people have a higher chance of getting rash after receiving the herpes zoster vaccine than after varicella vaccine.They should be monitored for any serious adverse reactions. Adverse reactions and vaccine administration errors should be reported to VAERS at 1-800-822-7967 or through the VAERS Web site.
- Contraindications and Precautions for Vaccination
- Vaccination Recommendations for Specific Groups
- Vaccine Safety and Monitoring
This symbol means you are leaving the CDC.gov Web site. For more information, please see CDC's Exit Notification and Disclaimer policy.
File Formats: All viewers, players, and plug-ins used on this site can be downloaded from the file formats page. (For example: Adobe Acrobat Reader for pdf files, Windows Media Player for audio and video files, PowerPoint Viewer for presentation slides, etc.)
Content last reviewed on April 5, 2012
Content Source: National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases