Haemophilus Influenzae type b (Hib)
Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) is a bacteria that causes a serious disease. Hib disease usually strikes children under 5 years old. Children can get Hib disease by being around other children or adults who may not show any symptoms.
Hib is one cause of meningitis, an infection of the covering of the brain and spinal cord. Before the Hib vaccine was introduced, Hib disease was the leading cause of bacterial meningitis among children under 5 years old in the United States. Meningitis can lead to lasting brain damage and deafness. Hib disease can also cause:
- severe swelling in the throat, making it hard to breathe
- infections of the blood, joints, bones, and covering of the heart
Before Hib vaccine, about 20,000 children in the United States under 5 years old got severe Hib disease each year and nearly 1,000 people died.
The Hib vaccine protects children against Hib disease.
Infants need four doses of Hib vaccine by age 1.
View personal stories of someone affected by Hib at ShotbyShot.org.