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Chickenpox Vaccination Service in your Home
Leicestershire based

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Chickenpox virus spreads via coughing and sneezing or personal contact with an infected individual. Although it is possible to develop Chickenpox from contact with someone who has shingles, you cannot become infected with shingles directly from someone who is infected with Chickenpox.

When do you become Infectious? 1-2 days before the rash occurs and approximately 5 days after (or until the rash crusts over).Majority of contacts living with someone who has Chickenpox will catch the infection if they have not had it before.


Chickenpox has an incubation period of 3 weeks. This is the time taken from the moment you are infected to the moment you begin to develop symptoms.

The usual symptom is a rash which can be widespread affecting the face, chest, arms and legs and often very itchy. Blisters can also occur inside the mouth. Fever and cold symptoms are also common. The symptoms tend to improve after 1 week.

The illness can vary from mild symptoms with a few spots to an itchy rash covering the whole body. Often it can be very distressing as it affects sleep, work and school in addition to causing potential scarring.


Complications of Chickenpox are rare in children, but include:

  • Superimposed bacterial infection of the skin, possibly widespread

  • Scarring of the skin

  • Neurological complications such as encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) or meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain).

  • very rarely-inflammation of the kidney and possible arthritis.

Adults who catch Chickenpox are more likely to have severe illness with complications, including:

  • Pneumonia

  • Encephalitis

Pregnancy  - Chickenpox in pregnancy is a serious disease for the mother and especially the baby. Therefore it is necessary to know your immune status before trying for pregnancy and if you are not immune then a vaccination maybe considered.


Generally most children will recover spontaneously and symptom management wit over the counter medication is required, such as pain relief, antihistamines, soothing lotions (calamine lotion). Anti-viral medication is often only required in severe infections. 

Chickenpox Vaccine

Chickenpox is very infectious, therefore if you are vulnerable to severe infection or have never had Chickenpox, then a vaccination should be considered. Vaccination should also be considered if you are working closely with children or in health care if you have never had the chickenpox infection.

Many countries routinely provide the chickenpox vaccine in their childhood immunisation programmes, e.g. United States. 

It is a live vaccine and thus it contains a weakened virus. The vaccination requires two doses in order to achieve 98% protection in children and 75% protection in adults against the Chickenpox infection. If  you do become infected with chickenpox after your vaccination then it is usually mild and of a shorter duration than those who have not been vaccinated. 


The vaccine can be given to anyone over 12 months of age:

  • to prevent Chickenpox in those who have never had it.

  • to protect occupational groups, e.g. those working with children and health care workers who have never had Chickenpox.

  • to prevent healthy susceptible contacts of immunocompromised patients from transmitting natural infection to them. For example, siblings of a leukaemic child, or a child whose parent is undergoing chemotherapy.

  • to prevent Chickenpox in those who have never had the illness and have been in close contact with a person with Chickenpox. The vaccine must be given within 3 days to prevent infection from occurring.


The vaccine cannot be given to the following groups:

  • Anyone with a suppressed or weakened immune system caused by diseases such as leukaemia, lymphoma, severe HIV infection or due to drugs such as oral steroids, cancer therapies.

  • Current illness with a temperature above 38.5 degrees Celsius.

  • A previous history of severe allergic reaction to the Chickenpox vaccine or to any of the ingredients in the vaccine.

  • Anyone with an active Tuberculosis disease.

  • Anyone with uncontrolled neurological disorders, such as epilepsy not responding to medication.

  • Pregnant women

Pregnancy & Breastfeeding

The Chickenpox vaccine cannot be given to pregnant women under any circumstance.

If a pregnant women is not immune to Chickenpox and encounters the disease, they must see their NHS healthcare provider as soon as possible to start immunoglobulin treatment. Pregnancy must be avoided during the vaccination course and for a further 1 month after the second dose has been received.


The Chickenpox vaccine can be given to breastfeeding mothers. Studies have shown that the virus is not transmitted through the breast milk to the infant.

Common Side Effects

  • Local reactions at the injection site, including pain, redness and swelling

  • Fever

  • A Chickenpox like rash can develop in approximately 10% of adults and 5% of children who receive the vaccine. The rash may remain around the injection site or appear across the body. On average, there is usually around 5 spots.

  • The vaccine virus can stay in the body for life and reactivate as shingles, but the risk of this occurring is substantially lower than with the naturally occurring infection.

Chickenpox infection post vaccination?

There have been reports of isolated cases where the vaccine virus has transmitted from the vaccinated individual to non immune contacts. Generally, if a vaccinated individual is in contact with someone with a normal immune system, then it is not a concern as the vaccine virus is weakened and will easily be dealt with by the individual with a normal immune system. However, in certain groups close contact should be avoided due to the severe complications that can occur in these immunocompromised individuals and thus it is advised that close contact is avoided during the period between vaccinations and for 4-6 weeks after the second dose with the following individuals:

  • Pregnant women who have never had Chickenpox infection.

  • Newborn babies (those within 28 days of birth) of mothers who have never had Chickenpox infection

  • Anyone with poor or suppressed immune system such as those receiving cancer treatments.

NOTE: transmission has only occurred in those individuals who developed a rash following the vaccination and is rare.

Other vaccines?

Chickenpox can be safely given at the same time as:

  • Diphtheria, tetanus, polio, pertussis vaccines

  • Meningitis B vaccine

  • All travel vaccines including yellow fever

MMR Vaccine

Chickenpox vaccine must be given either on the same day as the MMR vaccine or separated by interval of 4 weeks.

Schedule and Dosing 

Age - 1 month onwards ​

Vaccination course - 2 doses 4-8 weeks apart



£90 per dose

How it works

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