Skip to main content
Go to homepage

Print Page

Your Child's Immunizations: Rotavirus Vaccine (RV)

What Is Rotavirus?

Rotavirus is a common virus that causes vomiting and diarrhea. It usually affects infants and young children. Childcare centers are a common site of outbreaks.

Rotavirus Immunization Schedule

The vaccine is a liquid given by mouth. Children get it at ages 2 and 4 months, and again at 6 months, depending on the brand of vaccine used.

The rotavirus vaccines are live attenuated vaccines, which means they contain a weakened form of the virus.

Why Is the Rotavirus Vaccine Recommended?

Rotavirus can cause severe diarrhea, which can lead to dehydration. Some kids who get it need care in a hospital. Besides protecting children who get the vaccine, immunization can help stop the spread of rotavirus in a community.

What Are the Possible Side Effects of Rotavirus Immunization?

Side effects can include diarrhea, vomiting, and a fever.

When to Delay or Avoid Rotavirus Immunization

The vaccine is not recommended if your child:

Ask your doctor if the vaccination is OK if your child:

  • has a digestive system problem or a gastrointestinal disease
  • has immune system problems from a disease such as cancer
  • takes steroids, or other drugs that weaken the immune system
  • is getting chemotherapy or radiation therapy

Your doctor may decide that the benefits of vaccinating your child outweigh the possible risks.

Caring for Your Child After Rotavirus Immunization

Check with your doctor to see if you can give either acetaminophen or ibuprofen for pain or fever, and to find out the right dose.

If your child has vomiting or diarrhea, give small amounts of fluid often and watch for signs of dehydration, such as less urine (pee) than usual.

When Should I Call the Doctor?

Call the doctor if:

  • You aren't sure if the vaccine should be postponed or avoided.
  • Your child has problems after the immunization.

Rarely, some kids will develop intussusception within a week of getting the first or second dose of the vaccine. So watch your child for symptoms such as:

  • intense belly pain with uncontrollable crying
  • vomiting
  • blood or mucus in the poop
  • weakness, drowsiness, or fussiness

Call your doctor right away if your child has any signs of intussusception.

Reviewed by: Elana Pearl Ben-Joseph, MD
Date Reviewed: Feb 22, 2022

Lea este articulo en Español

What next?

Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
There are 10 nurses in the picture.

And we have many more pediatric primary care providers in Northeast Ohio. You can meet some of them here.
Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
The five differences are:
– Phone color
– Coat pocket
– Stethoscope earpiece color
– Stethoscope bell dot
– Clipboard paper color

Need help finding a doctor, choosing a location or getting a general question about Akron Children's answered? Call us or fill out the form and we'll help in any way we can.
Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
The two matching doctors are 9 and 14.

With virtual visits, you can see our pediatric experts from the comfort of home or wherever you are.
Summit Mall Play Area
Answer Key:
Click to expand
The correct path:
The Correct Path
We offer many ways to get pediatric care all over Northeast Ohio. Use this page to find the right kind of care and the most convenient location for you.