Vaccine Information: ENGERIX-B (Page 2 of 4)


Severe allergic reaction (e.g., anaphylaxis) after a previous dose of any hepatitis B-containing vaccine, or to any component of ENGERIX-B, including yeast, is a contraindication to administration of ENGERIX-B [see Description (11)].


5.1 Latex

The tip caps of the prefilled syringes contain natural rubber latex which may cause allergic reactions.

5.2 Syncope

Syncope (fainting) can occur in association with administration of injectable vaccines, including ENGERIX-B. Syncope can be accompanied by transient neurological signs such as visual disturbance, paresthesia, and tonic-clonic limb movements. Procedures should be in place to avoid falling injury and to restore cerebral perfusion following syncope.

5.3 Infants Weighing Less than 2,000 g at Birth

Hepatitis B vaccine should be deferred for infants with a birth weight <2,000 g if the mother is documented to be HBsAg negative at the time of the infant’s birth. Vaccination can commence at chronological age 1 month or hospital discharge. Infants born weighing <2,000 g to HBsAg-positive mothers should receive vaccine and HBIG within 12 hours after birth. Infants born weighing <2,000 g to mothers of unknown HBsAg status should receive vaccine and HBIG within 12 hours after birth if the mother’s HBsAg status cannot be determined within the first 12 hours of life. The birth dose in infants born weighing <2,000 g should not be counted as the first dose in the vaccine series and it should be followed with a full 3-dose standard regimen (total of 4 doses).2 [See Dosage and Administration (2).]

5.4 Apnea in Premature Infants

Apnea following intramuscular vaccination has been observed in some infants born prematurely. Decisions about when to administer an intramuscular vaccine, including ENGERIX-B, to infants born prematurely should be based on consideration of the infant’s medical status, and the potential benefits and possible risks of vaccination. For ENGERIX-B, this assessment should include consideration of the mother’s hepatitis B antigen status and the high probability of maternal transmission of hepatitis B virus to infants born of mothers who are HBsAg positive if vaccination is delayed.

5.5 Preventing and Managing Allergic Vaccine Reactions

Prior to immunization, the healthcare provider should review the immunization history for possible vaccine sensitivity and previous vaccination-related adverse reactions to allow an assessment of benefits and risks. Epinephrine and other appropriate agents used for the control of immediate allergic reactions must be immediately available should an acute anaphylactic reaction occur. [See Contraindications (4).]

5.6 Moderate or Severe Acute Illness

To avoid diagnostic confusion between manifestations of an acute illness and possible vaccine adverse effects, vaccination with ENGERIX-B should be postponed in persons with moderate or severe acute febrile illness unless they are at immediate risk of hepatitis B infection (e.g., infants born of HBsAg-positive mothers).

5.7 Altered Immunocompetence

Immunocompromised persons may have a diminished immune response to ENGERIX-B, including individuals receiving immunosuppressant therapy.

5.8 Multiple Sclerosis

Results from 2 clinical studies indicate that there is no association between hepatitis B vaccination and the development of multiple sclerosis,3 and that vaccination with hepatitis B vaccine does not appear to increase the short‑term risk of relapse in multiple sclerosis.4

5.9 Limitations of Vaccine Effectiveness

Hepatitis B has a long incubation period. ENGERIX-B may not prevent hepatitis B infection in individuals who had an unrecognized hepatitis B infection at the time of vaccine administration. Additionally, it may not prevent infection in individuals who do not achieve protective antibody titers.


6.1 Clinical Trials Experience

Because clinical trials are conducted under widely varying conditions, adverse reaction rates observed in the clinical trials of a vaccine cannot be directly compared with rates in the clinical trials of another vaccine and may not reflect the rates observed in practice.

The most common solicited adverse events were injection site soreness (22%) and fatigue (14%).

In 36 clinical studies, a total of 13,495 doses of ENGERIX-B were administered to 5,071 healthy adults and children who were initially seronegative for hepatitis B markers, and healthy neonates. All subjects were monitored for 4 days post-administration. Frequency of adverse events tended to decrease with successive doses of ENGERIX-B.

Using a symptom checklist, the most frequently reported adverse events were injection site soreness (22%) and fatigue (14%). Other events are listed below. Parent or guardian completed forms for children and neonates. Neonatal checklist did not include headache, fatigue, or dizziness.

Incidence 1% to 10% of Injections

Nervous System Disorders: Dizziness, headache.

General Disorders and Administration Site Conditions: Fever (>37.5°C), injection site erythema, injection site induration, injection site swelling.

Incidence <1% of Injections

Infections and Infestations: Upper respiratory tract illnesses.

Blood and Lymphatic System Disorders: Lymphadenopathy.

Metabolism and Nutrition Disorders: Anorexia.

Psychiatric Disorders: Agitation, insomnia.

Nervous System Disorders: Somnolence, tingling.

Vascular Disorders: Flushing, hypotension.

Gastrointestinal Disorders: Abdominal pain/cramps, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting.

Skin and Subcutaneous Tissue Disorders: Erythema, petechiae, pruritus, rash, sweating, urticaria.

Musculoskeletal and Connective Tissue Disorders: Arthralgia, back pain, myalgia, pain/stiffness in arm, shoulder, or neck.

General Disorders and Administration Site Conditions: Chills, influenza-like symptoms, injection site ecchymosis, injection site pain, injection site pruritus, irritability, malaise, weakness.

In a clinical trial, 416 adults with type 2 diabetes and 258 control subjects without type 2 diabetes who were seronegative for hepatitis B markers received at least 1 dose of ENGERIX‑B. Subjects were monitored for solicited adverse events for 4 days following each vaccination. The most frequently reported solicited adverse events in the entire study population were injection site pain (reported in 39% of diabetic subjects and 45% of control subjects) and fatigue (reported in 29% of diabetic subjects and 27% of control subjects). Serious adverse events were monitored through 30 days following the last vaccination. Serious adverse events (SAEs) occurred in 3.8% of diabetic subjects and 1.6% of controls. No SAEs were deemed related to ENGERIX-B.

6.2 Postmarketing Experience

In addition to reports in clinical trials, worldwide voluntary reports of adverse events received for ENGERIX-B since market introduction (1990) are listed below. This list includes SAEs or events that have a suspected causal connection to components of ENGERIX-B.

Because these events are reported voluntarily from a population of unknown size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to the vaccine.

Infections and Infestations

Herpes zoster, meningitis.

Blood and Lymphatic System Disorders


Immune System Disorders

Allergic reaction, anaphylactoid reaction, anaphylaxis. An apparent hypersensitivity syndrome (serum sickness-like) of delayed onset has been reported days to weeks after vaccination, including: arthralgia/arthritis (usually transient), fever, and dermatologic reactions such as urticaria, erythema multiforme, ecchymoses, and erythema nodosum.

Nervous System Disorders

Encephalitis; encephalopathy; migraine; multiple sclerosis; neuritis; neuropathy including hypoesthesia, paresthesia, Guillain-Barré syndrome and Bell’s palsy; optic neuritis; paralysis; paresis; seizures; syncope; transverse myelitis.

Eye Disorders

Conjunctivitis, keratitis, visual disturbances.

Ear and Labyrinth Disorders

Earache, tinnitus, vertigo.

Cardiac Disorders

Palpitations, tachycardia.

Vascular Disorders


Respiratory, Thoracic, and Mediastinal Disorders

Apnea, bronchospasm including asthma-like symptoms.

Gastrointestinal Disorders


Skin and Subcutaneous Tissue Disorders

Alopecia, angioedema, eczema, erythema multiforme including Stevens-Johnson syndrome, erythema nodosum, lichen planus, purpura.

Musculoskeletal and Connective Tissue Disorders

Arthritis, muscular weakness.

General Disorders and Administration Site Conditions

Injection site reaction.


Abnormal liver function tests.


7.1 Concomitant Administration with Vaccines and Immune Globulin

ENGERIX-B may be administered concomitantly with immune globulin.

When concomitant administration of other vaccines or immune globulin is required, they should be given with different syringes and at different injection sites. Do not mix ENGERIX-B with any other vaccine or product in the same syringe or vial.

7.2 Interference with Laboratory Tests

Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) derived from hepatitis B vaccines has been transiently detected in blood samples following vaccination. Serum HBsAg detection may not have diagnostic value within 28 days after receipt of a hepatitis B vaccine, including ENGERIX-B.


8.1 Pregnancy

Pregnancy Category C

Animal reproduction studies have not been conducted with ENGERIX-B. It is also not known whether ENGERIX-B can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman or can affect reproduction capacity. ENGERIX-B should be given to a pregnant woman only if clearly needed. provides trustworthy package insert and label information about marketed drugs and vaccines as submitted by manufacturers to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Package information is not reviewed or updated separately by Every individual vaccine label and package insert entry contains a unique identifier which can be used to secure further details directly from the U.S. National Institutes of Health and/or the FDA.

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