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Top Five Reasons for Adults to Get Vaccinated Against Pneumococcal Disease

Pneumococcal disease is serious and can be deadly. In the US, pneumococcal pneumonia, meningitis, and bloodstream infections (sepsis) kill tens of thousands each year, including thousands of adults age 65 years and older. Getting vaccinated can help you avoid serious health dangers.
More than 150,000 US adults are hospitalized with pneumococcal pneumonia each year. This type of pneumonia is particularly severe, killing 5-7% of those who contract it. The death rate is even higher in older adults.
Pneumococcal meningitis kills about one in three people who get it. People who survive pneumococcal meningitis can suffer from devastating health problems like hearing loss, seizures, blindness, and paralysis.
Pneumococcal bloodstream infections can be deadly. For those who survive, recovery is not easy. Treatment requires hospitalization, and patients often need weeks or months before returning to normal activities.
Getting pneumococcal vaccines as recommended reduces your chance of contracting and dying from pneumococcal disease. Two types of pneumococcal vaccines are recommended in the US. Your healthcare professional can discuss with you whether you should be vaccinated and if you need one or both vaccines.


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