Tetanus Toxoid (TT) vaccine


What is TT vaccine?

– Tetanus Toxoid (TT) vaccine protects against tetanus. it is provided as a liquid in vials and also in prefilled auto-disable injection devices. It is available in a number of different formulations:

– TT vaccine protects only against tetanus and neonatal tetanus.

– DTP Diphtheria- Tetanus- Pertussis vaccine protect against Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis.

– DT or Diphtheria- Tetanus vaccine protect against Diphtheria, Tetanus. Because it contain high level of diphtheria toxoid, it should not be given to children older than six years old or adults.

– Td or tetanus- diphtheria toxiod adult dose vaccine, is the same vaccine as DT, but with a lower diphtheria toxiod dose. It is suitable for children older than six years old and adults, including pregnant women.

– Td has the added advantage of protecting against diphtheria and tetanus.


– When given to women of child bearing age, vaccines that contain tetanus toxoid (TT or Td) not only protect women against tetanus, but also prevent neonatal tetanus in their newborn infant.

– When TT or Td vaccine is given to a women who is becomes pregnant, the antibodies that form in her body are passed to her fetus. These antibodies protect the baby the women against tetanus.

– A three – dose course of TT or Td provides protection against maternal and neonatal tetanus for at least five years. A maximum of five doses will protect women throughout their childbearing years.

– When vaccines containing tetanus toxiod stand for a long time, the vaccine separates from the liquid and looks like fine sand at the bottom of the vial. Shake the vial to mix the vaccine and liquid again before giving the vaccine TT/Td/DTP vaccines should never be frozen. the "shake test " will determine if the vaccine has been damaged by freezing. If the fails the shake test you must discarded it.


How safe are TT, Td and DT vaccines and what are their potential side-effect?

– Vaccines containing tetanus toxoid cause little serious reaction but quite frequent mild reactions.

Mild reactions to TT, Td and DT vaccines include:

– Soreness; about one in ten people who receive the vaccines have mild pain

– Redness, warmth and swelling at the injection site for about one to three days after the injection. This mild reaction is likely to be more common after later doses than earlier ones, and may affect between 50% and 85% of people who receive booster doses.

– Fever; bout one in ten people may develop a mild fever after receiving the vaccines.


Tetanus Toxoid Immunization Schedule for Routine Immunization Pregnant Women

Dose of TT or Td

When to give

Expect duration of protection


At first contact or as early possible in pregnancy



At least 4 weeks after TT1

1-3 years


At least 6 months after TT2 or during subsequent pregnancy

At least 5 years


At least 1 year after TT3 or during subsequent pregnancy.

At least 10 years


At least 1 year after TT4 or during subsequent pregnancy

For all childbearing years and possibly longer



– TT/Td given intramuscular in upper part of left arm (0.5ml).

– Increasing number of women have documentation of prior receipt of vaccines containing tetanus toxiod e.g. in early childhood or at school age. As the women reach childbearing age the incidence of maternal and neonatal tetanus is expected to decline further; three properly spaced doses of DTP given in childhood are consider equivalent in protection to two doses of TT/Td given in adulthood.

– Recent studies suggest that the duration of protection may be longer than indicated in the table. this matter is current under review.

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