Evidence-based recommendations for vaccination of paediatric patients with rheumatic diseases (PaedRD) were developed by following the EULAR standardised procedures for guideline development. The EULAR task force consisted of (paediatric) rheumatologists/immunologists, one expert in vaccine evaluation, one expert in public health and infectious disease control, and one epidemiologist. A systematic literature review was conducted in MEDLINE, EMBASE, and abstracts of the EULAR and American College of Rheumatology meetings of 2008/9. The level of evidence and strength of recommendation were based on customary scoring systems. Delphi voting was applied to assess the level of agreement between task force members. 107 papers and eight abstracts were used. The majority of papers considered seasonal influenza (41) or pneumococcal (23) vaccination. 26 studies were performed specifically in paediatric patients, and the majority in adult rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus patients. Fifteen recommendations were developed with an overall agreement of 91.7%. More research is needed on the safety and immunogenicity of (live-attenuated) vaccination in PaedRD, particularly in those using biologicals, and the effect of vaccination on prevention of infections.
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Funding This study was funded by EULAR.
Competing interests None.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.