A Mini Tetanus Guide for Travellers

It is widely known that if you step on a rusted nail, get wounded by a rusted metal part or got bitten by a pet, your first plan of action is to get a tetanus vaccine. If you are spending a lot of time outdoors or travelling abroad, you should make sure that your Tetanus immunisation is up-to-date. Getting a booster dose after an injury is far less efficient than being up to date beforehand.


What is Tetanus?

Tetanus is considered one of the serious diseases which affect the central nervous system. The bacterium which causes Tetanus is commonly found in the soil and can get into the body through any tear in the skin, such as wounds, burns, or animal bites.

Tetanus is widely known as Lockjaw as the jaw muscles get tighter, and the person cannot open their mouth. Other symptoms of tetanus are a headache, painful muscle stiffness, trouble swallowing, fever, seizures, and high blood pressure. Tetanus is very hazardous. It can cause difficulty in breathing and eventually a paralysis. Even with intensive medical care, 10%–20% of people with tetanus die.


How it affects the body?

Tetanus toxin spreads through the bloodstream and can cause serious damage to the nervous system. Early symptoms of the disease include stiffness of the jaw muscles, muscle spasms and difficulties swallowing. The disease can spread to affect other muscles in the body including the respiratory muscles. This can cause problems with breathing, and even the death can occur.



Revaxis is a combination vaccine called which protects adults against polio, diphtheria, tetanus. Children normally receive these vaccinations as part of their preventive medical care. If you are a traveller, then you should ensure that you have had a primary course of Revaxis vaccine and receive a booster every ten years if you are travelling to an area where polio, diphtheria, or tetanus are considered as a high risk. Many travel health clinics in Northampton offer travel vaccinations at competitive rates. Travellers travelling to the tropical countries as well as to many other regions will need to be vaccinated against these diseases.

Travellers should assess their own risk based on the nature of their trip. If you are travelling extensively to the rural areas of the same country where health risks are much higher, and access to medical facilities is limited or poorly developed.

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