Preventing Tetanus Infections - Topic Overview
If you need a tetanus shot, call your doctor to arrange for
Some people may need tetanus
immunoglobulin (IG) for a wound that is at high risk
for developing tetanus. The immunoglobulin is usually only needed if you have
not (or do not know if you have) completed the tetanus primary vaccination
What should I do if I have a reaction to a tetanus shot?
If you have a reaction to a tetanus shot, your symptoms may include
warmth, swelling, redness at the site where the shot was given or a fever.
Home treatment can help reduce the discomfort.
- Take an over-the-counter medicine for pain and
fever, such as
acetaminophen or a
nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID).
Because of the risk for Reye syndrome, do not give aspirin to anyone younger than age 20
unless your doctor tells you to.
- Put an ice pack on the area where
the shot was given for 20 minutes, 3 or 4 times a day for the first 24 to 48
hours. After 48 hours, heat may feel better.
Talk to your doctor before you give medicine to reduce a fever in a baby who is 3 months of age or younger. This is to make sure a young baby's fever is not a sign of a serious illness. The exception is if your baby has just had an immunization. Fevers sometimes occur as a reaction to immunizations. After immunizations, you can give your baby medicine to reduce a fever.