Tetanus is a neurological disorder characterized by increased muscle tone and spasms, which is caused by tetanospasmin, a powerful protein toxin produced and elaborated by Clostridium tetani. These microorganisms reside in the soil. Thus, if your open wound is infected by these microorganisms by accidentally touching the soil, you will suffer from tetanus.
Generalized tetanus, the most common form, is characterized by increased muscle tone and generalized spasms. The median onset after injury or after soiling your wound is 7 days; 15 percent of cases occur within 3 days and 10 percent after 14 days.
When there are generalized spasms, reduction in ventilation, apnea, or laryngospasm could take place, and you may die from it. It is, therefore, fatal that you urgently need this vaccination.
Generic and brand names
The generic name is: Tetanus toxoid adsorbed. The brand name is Imatet.
Composition of the vaccine
Purified tetanus toxoid adsorbed onto aluminium hydroxide/phosphate gel as an adjuvant. Thimerosal 0.01% concentration has been added as a preservative.
Mechanism of action
The vaccine induces the production of a protective level of antibodies against tetanus, persisting for at least 10 years.
Schedule of administration
For non-vaccinated individuals:
- Dose 1: At elected date
- Dose 2: At least 1 month after the first dose
- Dose 3: At least 6 months after the second dose
- Dose 4: At least 1 year after the third dose
- Dose 5: At least 1 year after the fourth dose
- TDAP: which is tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis vaccine should be given every 5 years outside of the United States and every 10 years in the United States
Indications and usage
This vaccine prevents the contraction of tetanus by children and adults especially those liable to be exposed to tetanus infection. Women of childbearing age need this vaccination to prevent neonatal tetanus. Persons engaged in outdoor activities, e.g. farm workers, gardeners, tillers, and athletes also need this vaccination. This is also used in the prevention of tetanus following injury and roadside accidents.
The physician should take all known precautions for the prevention and treatment of allergy or any other side effect. This should include a review of the patient’s history regarding possible drug sensitivity and should ensure the availability of the most appropriate anti-allergic medication to combat an immediate allergic reaction.
No specific side effects were mentioned in the literature. Before injecting this biological product, however, the physician should be aware of known and standard precautions for the prevention and treatment of allergy or any other side effect. This should include a review of the patient’s history regarding possible drug sensitivity and should ensure the availability of anti-allergic drugs required to combat an allergic reaction which could happen so suddenly.
Dosage and mode of administration
The vaccine consists of 0.5 ml suspension, containing 40 i.u. of tetanus toxoid. It is injected intramuscularly into your gluteal or deltoid muscle according to your choice and that of your physician. Extreme care should be exercised not to inject the vaccine into your blood vessel or into your skin.