Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine

Generic Name: diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (dt) vaccine (dif-THEER-ee-ah TET-a-nus TOX-oids)
Brand Name: Generic only. No brands available.

Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine is used for:

Immunizing children ages 6 weeks to up to 7 years old against diphtheria and tetanus.

Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine is a vaccine. It works by causing the patient's immune system to produce antibodies against diphtheria and tetanus, which helps the patient's body to fight the infection.

Do NOT use diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine if:

  • the patient is allergic to any ingredient in diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine
  • the patient has had a severe allergic reaction (eg, rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue) to a prior diphtheria or tetanus toxoid vaccination

Contact the patient's doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to the patient.

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Before using diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine:

Some medical conditions may interact with diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine. Tell the patient's doctor or pharmacist if the patient has any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to the patient:

  • if the patient is taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if the patient has allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if the patient has a weakened immune system or any illness or infection
  • if the patient is receiving chemotherapy or radiation therapy
  • if the patient has a history of Guillain-Barré syndrome
  • if the patient is taking anticoagulants (eg, warfarin)

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine. Tell the patient's health care provider if the patient is taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Medicines that suppress the immune system such as corticosteroids (eg, prednisone), cancer chemotherapy (eg, methotrexate), or cyclosporine because they may decrease diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine's effectiveness. Check with the patient's doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure if any of the patient's medicines suppress the immune system

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask the patient's health care provider if diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine may interact with other medicines that the patient takes. Check with the patient's health care provider before the patient starts, stops, or changes the dose of any medicine.

How to use diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine:

Use diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine as directed by the patient's doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine is usually administered as an injection at the patient's doctor's office, hospital, or clinic. Ask the patient's doctor or pharmacist any questions that you may have about diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine.
  • The vaccine schedule is started in infants between 6 weeks and 2 months old and should be completed before the child's seventh birthday.
  • It is very important to receive each vaccine as scheduled. Be sure to make a note of when each vaccine was given for the child's medical record.
  • If the patient misses a dose of the vaccine series, contact the patient's doctor immediately.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine.

Important safety information:

  • If the patient has a fever or an infection, the doctor may delay giving the vaccine.
  • Make sure the patient's health care provider has a complete record of the patient's vaccinations and is aware of the patient's current health status.
  • It is important that the patient complete the vaccination series.
  • Tell the patient's doctor if the patient will be receiving other vaccines.
  • Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine may not protect everyone who receives it from tetanus or diphtheria. Discuss any questions or concerns with the patient's doctor.
  • This vaccine is not approved for use in infants younger than 6 weeks old or in patients 7 years old and older. Safety and effectiveness in these age groups have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: It is not known if diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine can cause harm to the fetus. Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine is not approved for use in patients 7 years old and older.

Possible side effects of diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Decreased appetite; mild fever; pain, redness, swelling, tenderness, or a hard lump at the injection site.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); fainting; seizures; severe or persistent pain, redness, swelling, or tenderness at the injection site; swollen lymph glands; tingling or weakness of the legs, hands, or feet.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact the patient's health care provider. Call the patient's doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine:

Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine is usually handled and stored by a health care provider. Keep diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine, please talk with the patient's doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If the patient's symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with the patient's doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using diphtheria and tetanus toxoids (DT) vaccine.

Issue Date: July 2, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.001
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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