Caused by toxin of bacteria from soil. Causes painful muscle spasms, convulsions and lockjaw.

Effects of the disease

About three in 100 patients die. The risk is greatest for the very young or old.

How to immunise and when

Immunisation with a DTPa-containing (diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough) vaccine is the best way to prevent Tetanus. DTPa-containing vaccine is given at 2, 4 and 6 months of age (but can be given from 6 weeks) with a booster dose at four years of age, that can be given from 3 years 6 months of age.

Side effects of immunisation

About one in 10 has local inflammation at the site of injection or fever. Serious adverse events are very rare.

If you have any concerns about side effects of vaccines, talk to your doctor or nurse.

Page last updated: 10 Aug 2017