Your baby can come into contact with the bacteria that cause Invasive Pneumococcal Disease almost anywhere.
Baby Pneumococcal Facts for Invasive Pneumococcal Disease
Find out the causes of Invasive Pneumococcal Disease, and how your baby can be exposed to bacteria almost anywhere, such as playgrounds, playdates and on toys.

You do everything possible to help keep your little one healthy. But your baby can come into contact with the bacteria that cause Invasive Pneumococcal Disease almost anywhere.

Such as:
• In a playground
• On a playdate
• On an object or even a cuddly toy

About Invasive Pneumococcal Disease
About IPD (Invasive Pneumococcal Disease) | Baby Pneumococcal Facts
Learn what Invasive Pneumococcal Disease (IPD) is and how it's caused by a bacteria that invades the bloodstream or fluid around the brain & spinal cord.

Here’s why it’s called Invasive Pneumococcal Disease:

Invasive—It’s called “invasive” because it invades parts of the body that normally don’t have bacteria, like the bloodstream or the tissues and fluids surrounding the brain and spinal cord.

Pneumococcal (new-ma-ka-kull)—It’s caused by bacteria called Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus) that can be harmful.

Disease—Two key types of Invasive Pneumococcal Disease are pneumococcal meningitis (sometimes called bacterial meningitis) and pneumococcal bacteremia (bloodstream infection). These two types have different symptoms and complications, depending on which parts of the body are infected.

The Dangers of Invasive Pneumococcal Disease
The Dangers of Invasive Pneumococcal Disease | Baby Pneumococcal Facts
Learn about the two forms of Invasive Pneumococcal Disease (IPD) for babies, Pneumococcal meningitis and Pneumococcal bacteremia and their symptoms.

Generally, invasive pneumococcal disease is serious, but treatable. However, some invasive forms can be deadly.

For any questions or concerns about your child’s health, please talk to your healthcare provider.

Pneumococcal meningitis

Pneumococcal meningitis is a serious infection around the brain and spinal cord and is a type of Invasive Pneumococcal Disease. In fact, 1 in 15 children under the age of 5 who get pneumococcal meningitis die from it. Others may experience serious and even permanent complications such as hearing loss or brain damage.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), your baby may have symptoms like fever, headache, and irritability. In addition, your baby may not want to eat or drink, may be vomiting, and may be less alert than usual.

Pneumococcal bacteremia

Pneumococcal bacteremia is a type of invasive pneumococcal disease that is an infection of the bloodstream. Although uncommon, this disease can be serious and potentially deadly. About 1 out of 100 children younger than 5 years old with this infection die from it.

According to the CDC, your baby may be less alert and have symptoms including fever and chills.

Among children
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Among children, babies under 2 years old are at highest risk, and they can be infected almost anywhere

Babies under 2 years old have immune systems that are still developing, making it harder for them to fight off illnesses such as pneumococcal disease. This means that once the bacteria (pneumococcus) that cause these diseases enter your baby’s body, it may be easier for the germs to spread to other parts of the body.

A simple ear infection can sometimes turn into Invasive Pneumococcal Disease

Pneumococcus is a common cause of almost half of acute middle ear infections. Many children have had at least one of these infections by the time they are a year old. Even though pneumococcal ear infections are often mild and commonly occur, they can progress to Invasive Pneumococcal Disease.

Meningitis may lead to brain damage or even death

One of the causes of bacterial meningitis among infants and children is pneumococcus. In fact, pneumococcus has become one of the leading causes of bacterial meningitis among children younger than 5 years of age in the United States with the decline of the HIB disease. Pneumococcal meningitis occurs when pneumococcus invades the tissues and fluids surrounding the brain and spinal cord. The bacteria from pneumococcal meningitis can cause brain tissues to swell and become inflamed. Symptoms can appear gradually over several days or appear quickly after pneumococcus’ invasion. Symptoms may quickly become life-threatening.

How It Spreads
IPD Causes and How it Spreads | Baby Pneumococcal Facts
Find out about the bacteria that causes Invasive Pneumococcal Disease (IPD), and the first steps to take in helping to protect your baby.

Close contact or cough is all it may take for bacteria to spread

The bacteria that cause Invasive Pneumococcal Disease are infectious. In fact, according to the CDC, even healthy people can carry the bacteria that cause Invasive Pneumococcal Disease in their nose and throat without knowing it and without getting the disease themselves, but it can still be spread to others.

Here’s how the bacteria that cause Invasive Pneumococcal Disease can spread:
Touching an object

The bacteria that can cause Invasive Pneumococcal Disease may spread to your baby via direct contact with toys or objects where the bacteria are present.


Pneumococcal bacteria can spread by direct contact with saliva or mucus. Many people can have the bacteria in their nose or throat without becoming sick themselves, especially children. If your child is in daycare, the risk of infection is more than twice as high.

A cough

Someone’s cough that contains pneumococcus bacteria can enter your child’s body through their nose, mouth, throat, or eyes, and may invade parts of the body that are normally free from infection. Once the bacteria are inside your baby, they can spread.

What You Can Do
What You Can Do to Help Prevent or Treat IPD | Baby Pneumococcal Facts
Learn about a preventative measure for Invasive Pneumococcal Disease (IPD) and how antibiotics can be used to treat it.

You’ve taken the first step in helping to protect your baby by learning about Invasive Pneumococcal Disease.

There’s more you can do:

  • Invasive Pneumococcal Disease can be treated with antibiotics which are only given to children after they become ill. Sometimes, Invasive Pneumococcal Disease can get worse quickly. The disease can be treated, but sometimes children don’t respond to treatment.
  • There are vaccines available to help prevent serious illnesses like Invasive Pneumococcal Disease. Speak to your healthcare provider for more information and to answer any questions you may have about vaccine risks.
  • Visit this link to learn more from the CDC about Invasive Pneumococcal Disease, its symptoms and treatments.
  • This website is neither owned or controlled by Pfizer. Pfizer does not endorse and is not responsible for the content or services of this site.
Real Stories

Invasive Pneumococcal Disease (IPD) can have real and devastating effects on families. Hear from parents who have had first hand experience with this serious disease.

Watch Video
See the Licatas’ Story
Hear more about the risks and dangers of Invasive Pneumococcal Disease (IPD) and how you can help protect your baby.
Watch Video
See Shannon & Abigale’s Story
Learn more about Invasive Pneumococcal Disease and how it can spread. Find out how you can help protect your baby.