Find & Manage Your Patient Assistance Programs
Estimated patient savings $600,000,000.00
BCG vaccine injection

Important Note

The following information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional. It should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare professional before using this drug.


(BCG vack-SEEN, AN-tee-two-BER-kyou-ler)



This is a vaccine used to lower the risk of getting tuberculosis in persons who may be exposed to the disease.

How To Use

This medication is given as an injection by trained medical personnel. Within 7 to 14 days, the skin, where injected, will appear red and raised. This mark will slowly fade over weeks. A slight scar may remain for 3 to 6 months. Keep the vaccination site clean and dry. Do not use ointments or creams on the area. A second vaccination may be needed after 2 to 3 months. A tuberculin test will be done to see if it is necessary.

Side Effects

This medication causes redness and mild swelling where the injection was given. These symptoms will improve over time. Notify your doctor if you experience: pain, swollen glands aching bones, aching muscles, fever. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.


To be most effective, persons who have been vaccinated should stay away from active cases of tuberculosis for 6 to 12 weeks. People with impaired immune systems (due to chemotherapy or radiation treatment) should not receive this vaccine. This vaccination should not be given to pregnant women unless the benefits outweigh the risks. Discuss this with your doctor. It is not known if this medication appears in breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Drug Interactions

Tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription drugs you may use, especially of: steroids (prednisone-type drugs), antibiotics.


If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. Symptoms of overdose may include swollen glands, abnormal patches of skin, vision problems, fever, chills, or severe dizziness.


Keep the vaccination site clean until the local reaction has disappeared.

Missed Dose

Check with your doctor promptly if you miss a scheduled dose (e.g., a second dose is sometimes required).


Refrigerate and protect from light.