CDC VACCINATION INFORMATION ABOUT DIPHTHERIA, TETANUS, AND PERTUSSIS
This is frequently combined with HIB in a vaccine called: DTP-HIB
Why get vaccinated?
Diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus are serious diseases.
Diphtheria causes a thick covering in the back of the throat. It can lead to breathing problems, paralysis, heart failure, and even death.
Tetanus causes painful tightening of the muscles, usually all over the body. It can lead to "locking" of the jaw so the person cannot open his mouth or swallow. Tetanus can lead to death.
Pertussis (Whooping cough)
Pertussis causes coughing spells so bad that it is hard for infants to eat, drink, or breathe. These can last for weeks. It can lead to pneumonia, seizures (jerking and staring spells), brain damage, and death.
Diphtheria, tetanus, and
pertussis vaccines prevent these diseases. Most children who get all their shots will be
protected during childhood. Many more children would get these diseases if we stopped
Diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis vaccines
Protects against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis Used for many years
Protects against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis Newer than DTP
The Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention (CDC) recommends DTaP over DTP. This is because DTaP is less likely to
cause reactions than DTP.
Combinations: To reduce the number of shots a child must get, DTP or DTaP may be available in combination with other vaccines.
DT protects against diphtheria
and tetanus, but not pertussis. It only is recommended for children who should not get
What are the risks from these vaccines?
As with any medicine, vaccines carry a small risk of serious harm, such as a severe allergic reaction or even death. If there are reactions, they usually start within 3 days and don't last long. Most people have no serious reactions from these vaccines.
Possible reactions to these vaccines:
Mild Reactions (common)
Mild reactions are much less likely after DTaP than after DTP.
Moderate to Serious Reactions (uncommon)
Moderate to serious reactions have been uncommon with DTP vaccine:
With DTaP vaccine, these reactions are much less likely to happen.
Severe Reactions (very rare)
There are two kinds of serious reactions:
Is there lasting damage?
Experts disagree on whether
pertussis vaccines cause lasting brain damage. If they do, it is very rare. Most experts
believe serious reactions will be more rare after DTaP than after DTP.
When should my child get vaccinated?
What can be done to reduce possible fever and pain after this vaccine?
Give your child an aspirin-free
pain reliever for 24 hours after the shot.
Some children should not get these vaccines or should wait.
Tell your doctor or nurse if
Your doctor or nurse has
information on what to do in this case (for example, give one of these vaccines, wait,
give medicine to prevent fever).
What if there is a moderate to severe reaction?
What should I look for?
What should I do?
The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program
The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program is a federal program that helps pay for the care of those seriously injured by vaccines.
For details call l-800-338-2382
or visit the program's Web site at http://www.hrsa.dhhs.gov/bhpr/vicp/new.htm.
How can I learn more?
Ask your doctor or nurse. They can give you the vaccine package insert or suggest other sources of information.
Call your local or state health department. They can give you the Parents Guide to Childhood Immunization or other information.
Contact the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
Call l-800-232-2522 (English)
U.S. Department of Health and