What is chickenpox?

Chickenpox, also known as varicella, is a highly contagious disease caused by the varicella zoster virus. Chickenpox usually occurs in childhood as a rather harmless disease with a typical skin rash and fever. However, the pathogen can be dangerous for adults, immunocompromised individuals and during pregnancy. In adults it can cause pneumonia, ear infection or meningitis.


When and how often should I be vaccinated against chickenpox?

Almost the entire adult Swiss population (98%) has had the disease once in their lifetime, which is why vaccination is rarely necessary. If you are unsure whether or not you have previously had chickenpox, a blood test can be considered. If one has not previously had chickenpox, it is recommended to be vaccinated. This requires 2 vaccinations with a minimum interval of 1 month.

66-96 CHF per dose

plus consultation and injection fee

What else should I know about the chickenpox vaccine?

  • Since the chickenpox vaccination cannot be administered during pregnancy, it is advisable to check the vaccination status beforehand (and if necessary, to  be vaccinated before becoming pregnant). The same applies to rubella.

  • The same pathogen that causes chickenpox is also responsible for shingles. 20% of people who have chickenpox also contract shingles later in life.

  • The vaccination can be given alone or in combination with measles, mumps and rubella in one shot.

  • For more information on chickenpox, please visit the website of the FOPH.

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