Anybody can get pneumococcal disease. However, some groups are at a significantly higher risk for pneumococcal disease or its complications.
People at higher risk include:
- Infants and children younger than two years of age.
- Children who have an underlying medical condition which predisposes them to invasive pneumococcal disease.
- People over 65 years of age.
- Children in poor areas of developing countries.
- People with weakened immune systems, such as those with immunosuppression (e.g. high-dose steroids, chemotherapy), HIV, or AIDS.
- Patients with chronic diseases, such as:
- Lung disease
- Heart disease
- Kidney disease
- Sickle cell disease
- Residents of chronic (long-term) care facilities.
- Patients who have a history of spleen dysfunction or spleen disease.
- Tobacco smokers.
- People who have a cochlear implant (a type of hearing aid).
- Patients with cerebrospinal fluid leak (e.g. due to fractured base of skull)