Prevention of problems

  • Immunisation with pneumonia vaccine is indicated for persons two years of age and older and may need to be repeated according to local policy. Annual immunisation with influenza vaccine is indicated. Both can be given to individuals treated with steroids, though the immune response to vaccination may be diminished in those individuals. Up-to-date, detailed information on immunisation indications, contraindications, and schedules can be obtained from various national sources – see the “resources” section at the end of this document. It is essential to keep up to date with vaccination policies as they can change regularly according to new threats, such as the emergence of H1N1 flu in 2009.
  • If chest infection occurs, then in addition to use of manually and mechanically assisted cough, antibiotics should be considered.

Information based on consensus statement (published in January 2010)