Recommended Vaccines for 11/12-Year-Olds


1. Tdap Vaccine: Fights Whooping Cough (Pertussis) plus Tetanus and Diphtheria
The Tdap vaccine protects again tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis. The childhood DTaP vaccine also protects against these diseases, but it wears off over time, so a booster is recommended at ages 11 or 12.
Pertussis (whooping cough) causes coughing fits that can be so severe that they disrupt normal life. It is easily transmitted by coughing or sneezing. Infants are more likely to be hospitalized and die if they get pertussis. Pertussis often goes unrecognized by health providers, creating a misperception that it is not a problem.

2. The Meningococcal Vaccine: Fights Bacterial Meningitis
The meningococcal vaccine protects against meningococcal disease, which can spread quickly in crowded conditions. Meningococcal disease is a leading cause of bacterial meningitis, which is a serious infection of the protective lining of the brain and the spinal cord. It can also result in serious bloodstream infections or pneumonia.
The result of infection can be devastating. Adolescents die in about 10% of cases, even with antibiotic treatment. About 20% of survivors will have long-term disability, such as loss of a limb, deafness, nervous system problems, or mental retardation. Meningococcal disease is particularly dangerous because it can progress rapidly and result in death in 48 hours or less.

3) The HPV Vaccine: Fights Human Papilloma Virus
The HPV vaccine protects against human papilloma virus, which causes cervical cancer and genital warts. HPV is very common – up to 80% of sexually active women will contract HPV during their lifetime. The HPV vaccine protects against 70% of HPV-related cervical cancers and up to 90% of HPV-related cases of genital warts.
HPV is a common virus that is spread through sexual contact. There are many different types of HPV. Some types can cause cervical cancer in women. Other types of HPV can cause genital warts in both males and females. Each year about 12,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer and about 4,000 women die from it in the U.S.
Native American women have relatively high rates of cervical cancer, which can be prevented by the HPV vaccine. Nationwide, the cervical cancer rate for Native American women is 9.4 per 100,000, compared with 7.4 for non-Hispanic white women.

4) Flu Shots: Protect Against Seasonal Influenza and 2009 H1N1 Influenza
The flu (influenza) is an infection of the nose, throat, and lungs that is caused by the influenza virus. The flu spreads from person to person. Most people with flu are sick for about a week, but then feel better. However, some people (especially young children, pregnant women, older people, and people with chronic health problems such as asthma or diabetes) can get very sick and some can die. About 36,000 people die from seasonal influenza each year in the U.S.
2009 H1N1 (sometimes called “swine flu”) is a new influenza virus causing illness in people. When the 2009 H1N1 outbreak was first detected in mid-April 2009, CDC began working with states to collect, compile and analyze information regarding the 2009 H1N1 flu outbreak, including the numbers of confirmed and probable cases and the ages of these people. The information analyzed by CDC supports the conclusion that 2009 H1N1 flu has caused greater disease burden in people younger than 25 years of age than older people.

5) Catch Up Vaccines
Preteens should also be caught up on some of the vaccines that are recommended for infants and children, including hepatitis b, measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), polio, and varicella (chickenpox). Preteens who only got one shot against chickenpox should get the second recommended dose.

For more info, visit or call (800) CDC-INFO (800-232-4636).