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Side Effects of the BCG Vaccine

The BCG vaccine is used to treat bladder cancer. There are immediate side effects from the vaccine, but if your symptoms persist, contact your doctor.

BCG Vaccine


Genitourinary Side Effects

According to drugs.com, the most common side effects of the BCG vaccine involve the genitourinary system–the urinary tract and reproductive organs. Symptoms may include frequent urination, urinary tract infection, cystitis, genital pain, dysuria, urinary incontinence, hematuria, urgency and cramps.


Gastrointestinal Symptoms

Gastrointestinal side effects include abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting and anorexia.


Drug Interactions

Do not take a BCG vaccination if you are using antibiotics, steroids or chemotherapy. According to Medicine Net, the BCG vaccine may interact with such drugs.



Some side effects are to be expected within 72 hours of getting a BCG vaccine, states Medicine Net. However, call your doctor immediately if you suspect an infection from the BCG vaccine, or if you experience excessive nausea, cough, fever, vomiting or blood in your urine after the 72-hour period.



According to Medicine Net, it is possible to spread the virus from the BCG vaccine to others within six hours of receiving it. To prevent this, use bleach in the toilet when you urinate during this time.



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