Shingles vaccine after lymphoma treatment

I have a patient who underwent chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation for abdominal large cell lymphoma 15 years ago. She has had no recurrence of malignancy. Is it safe for her to receive the herpes zoster vaccine?—ROBERT W. WATSON, JR., PA-C, Akron, Ohio

According to the CDC, patients with leukemia, lymphomas, or other malignant neoplasms affecting the bone marrow or lymphatic system should NOT receive the zoster vaccine. However, if the disease is in remission or the patient has not received chemotherapy or radiation for at least three months, they can receive the vaccine. Other contra- indications include pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, immunodeficiency, and immunosuppressive therapy (depending on route, dose, and duration). For a complete report of the vaccine, its efficacy, indications, contraindications, and adverse effects, see MMWR. 2008;57:1-30.—Claire Babcock O'Connell, MPH, PA-C (137-7)

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