What should be considered in case of asplenia?
Asplenia means that the spleen is missing or not functioning.
Every year, about 8,000 people in Germany have their spleen surgically removed (splenectomy). Estimates show that about one in a thousand German citizens has no spleen. In addition, there are diseases in which the function of the spleen is limited. Patients with asplenia have an increased risk of contracting infections caused by pathogens that cause meningitis or pneumonia, such as pneumococci, meningococci or Haemophilus influenza. The infections are often particularly severe in these patients.
Vaccination against the above-mentioned pathogens is an important measure to protect asplenia patients.
Patients with asplenia should always carry an emergency passport. You can find more information about asplenia and the current vaccination recommendations on the website of the Asplenia-Net initiative. There you can also order the emergency passport free of charge.