Rabies is a rare but serious infection that attacks the brain and spinal cord. It takes time for the rabies virus to reach the brain after infection, which can be anywhere from days to weeks to months. It’s important to get treatment as soon as you suspect you’ve been infected because it will be too late once you become symptomatic. Once symptoms start to appear, the disease is nearly 100% fatal.
Do I Need a Rabies Vaccine?
Rabies isn’t as prevalent in the UK as it once was so the average person is at a relatively low risk of infection. You should consider a rabies vaccination if you are:
- Travelling to a region where rabies is more common
- Travelling to an area with limited medical facilities
- Working with animals that may be infected with rabies
- Participating in activities that could put you at risk (e.g. rural hiking or biking)
If any of the above apply to you, book an appointment online with Touchwood Pharmacy for our convenient and affordable rabies vaccination service in Streatham and Walsall.
Rabies Vaccination Schedule
Rabies vaccination is given as three doses into your upper arm at specific intervals. The first dose should be at least five weeks before your intended travel or when you expect to be at risk of exposure. The second dose should be given seven days after the first, with the third administered three weeks after the second dose.
How Long Does the Rabies Vaccine Last?
Your rabies vaccine will protect you for up to 10 years. If you’re going to continue being at risk of rabies exposure, you can get booster doses to up your immunity. How often you need a booster dose will depend on your level of risk, for example if you work closely with animals that may be infected. Your GP, pharmacist, or occupational health advisor will be able to discuss whether you need a booster shot and when you should get one.
If you’re going to be travelling and are worried about being exposed to rabies, Touchwood Pharmacy can help. We offer comprehensive travel clinic services including rabies vaccination in Sydenham and Ramsgate. You can also get effective rabies vaccination in Northolt from one of our highly skilled specialists.