What is the Full Form of BCG?

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BCG full form

The full form of BCG is Bacillus Calmette-Guérin. It is a vaccine that is used for the prevention of tuberculosis (TB). BCG is made from a weakened strain of Mycobacterium bovis which is closely related to the bacteria that cause TB. In this article, we will explore the BCG full form and understand its uses and benefits.

What is BCG?

BCG was first developed by Albert Calmette and Camille Guerin, two French bacteriologists, in the 1920s. The vaccine is named after them. BCG is one of the most widely used vaccines in the world, especially in countries with a high prevalence of TB. It first came into use in the year 1921 by Dr Weil-Hale.

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How Does BCG Work?

BCG vaccine works by stimulating the immune system to provide protection against tuberculosis. 

  • When the vaccine is administered, the weakened strain of Mycobacterium bovis stimulates the immune system to produce an immune response. 
  • This immune response helps the body recognize and develop the bacteria that can perform against TB.

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Benefits of BCG Vaccine

The BCG vaccine offers several benefits in the prevention and management of tuberculosis. Some of the key benefits of BCG vaccination are:

  1. Prevention of Tuberculosis: BCG vaccination is highly effective in preventing severe forms of tuberculosis in infants and young children. It also provides some protection against adult pulmonary TB.
  2. Reduced Transmission: BCG vaccination helps reduce the transmission of TB from infected individuals to others. It creates a barrier by providing a level of immunity in vaccinated individuals, reducing the spread of the bacteria.
  3. Cost-Effective: The vaccine is relatively inexpensive compared to other vaccinations, making it accessible to low and middle-income countries.

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BCG Vaccination Schedule

The BCG vaccination is usually given at birth. In countries with a high prevalence of TB, it is given within the first few days or weeks of a child’s life. The vaccine is usually given as an intradermal injection in the upper arm.

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