What is DT vaccine?

DT vaccine contains a reduced dose of tetanus and diphtheria vaccine and no pertussis vaccine. It is given together with polio vaccine at 5 years. The method of storing and giving DT vaccine is the same as that for DPT vaccine. The dose is 0.5 ml intramuscularly. Tetanus immunisation should also be given after an injury, especially if the wound is contaminated with soil. Usually, this is not needed if tetanus immunisation has been given within the past 5 years.

It is important that all pregnant women have received tetanus immunisation as this protects newborn infants against neonatal tetanus. If not, they should be immunised during the pregnancy with pure tetanus toxoid (TT), 3 doses given one month apart. In areas where neonatal tetanus still occurs, women who have been previously immunised against tetanus should be given a single booster dose of tetanus vaccine during pregnancy. Tetanus immunisation is safe during pregnancy as it is a toxoid and not a live vaccine.

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