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Tetanus and Diphtheria Vaccine (Td) Information


NOTE:  Wellness Services will not provide tetanus vaccines to persons under the age of 16.  For persons 16-17 years of age, a parent or legal guardian must be present and will be required to sign a written consent before a tetanus vaccine can be given. Those under the age of 16 should visit their personal health care provider to receive a tetanus vaccine.

Benefits of the vaccine
Vaccination is the best way to protect against tetanus and diphtheria.  Because of vaccination, there are many fewer cases of these diseases.  Cases are rare in children because most get DTP (Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis), DTaP (Diphtheria, Tetanus, and acellular Pertussis), or DT (Diphtheria and Tetanus) vaccines.  There would be many more cases if we stopped vaccinating people.

When should you get the vaccine?
Td is made for people 7 years of age and older.
People who have not gotten at least three doses of any tetanus and diphtheria vaccine (DTP, DTaP or DT) during their lifetime should do so using Td.  After a person gets the third dose, a Td dose is needed every 10 years all through life.
Other vaccines may be given at the same time as Td.  Tell your doctor or nurse if the person getting the vaccine:
  • Ever had a serious allergic reaction or other problem with Td, or any other tetanus and diphtheria vaccine (DTP, DTaP or DT)
  • Now has a moderate or severe illness
  • Is pregnant
If you are not sure, ask your doctor or nurse.
What are the risks from Td vaccine?
As with any medicine, there are very small risks that serious problems, even death, could occur after getting a vaccine.  The risks from the vaccine are much smaller than the risks from the disease if people stopped using the vaccine.  Almost all people who get Td have no problems from the vaccine.
Mild Problems:
If these problems occur, they usually start within hours to a day or two after vaccination.  They may last 1-2 days:
  • Soreness, redness, or swelling where the shot was given
These problems can be worse in adults who get Td vaccine very often.  Acetaminophen or ibuprofen (non-aspirin) may be used to reduce soreness
Severe Problems:
These problems happen very rarely:
  • Serious allergic reaction
  • Deep, aching pain and muscle wasting in upper arm(s).  This starts two days to four weeks after the shot, and may last many months
Source: Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
For more information please visit,
North Colorado Medical Center
1801 16th St.
Greeley, CO 80631
(970) 352-4121
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