Vaccine - Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis - DTaP - Convenient Care Clinic

This is a vaccine that decreases your child's risk of getting diphtheria, tetanus or pertussis.

This is a vaccine that decreases your child's risk of getting diphtheria, tetanus or pertussis.

Diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis are three bacterial illnesses that have potentially serious complications.

  • Due to the widespread use of the DTaP vaccine (and other variations of this vaccine) these illnesses are not as common as they use to be.

Diphtheria is characterized by:

  • Fever
  • Cough, sore throat and hoarseness
  • Swollen neck glands

Severe complications are due to the toxins made by the bacteria. They include throat swelling with difficulty swallowing and breathing, inflammation of the heart muscle (myocarditis), paralysis, kidney damage and death.

Tetanus (lockjaw) is characterized by painful muscle spasms that can spread throughout the body. (Muscle spasms in the jaw produce the classic "lockjaw".) The spasms can lead to muscle tears or broken bones. Other symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Excessive sweating
  • Stiff neck
  • High blood pressure
  • Fast or irregular heart beat

Severe complications include difficulty swallowing and breathing, pneumonia, brain damage due to lack of oxygen during spasms and death.

Pertussis (whooping cough) is characterized by:

  • Cold symptoms
  • Slight fever
  • Mild cough that progresses to episodes of severe coughing that often end with a "whoop". The cough may be forceful enough to cause problems such a bruising, nosebleeds and broken ribs.

Complications may include pneumonia, dehydration, ear infections, seizures and death. Severe symptoms and complications are more common in infants younger than age 1.

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that children get their DTaP vaccine:

  • At two months
  • At four months
  • At six months
  • Between fifteen and eighteen months
  • Before they enter school, typically between four to six years of age

You may need to show proof of DTaP vaccination before your child can attend school.

The DTaP vaccine is frequently given with the polio and hemophilus influenza vaccines.

  • If your child has a moderate to severe illness, check with your healthcare provider before your child receives the vaccine.
  • Your child should not receive the vaccine at all if he or she has an allergy to any of the components of the vaccine.
  • Adults may also need to be immunized against these three diseases. However, that is done with a different vaccine (the TdaP vaccine) than the one used for children.

You should contact your healthcare provider if your child is not up to date on the DTaP vaccine. Here is a list of questions you can ask during your appointment.

  • Do you recommend this vaccine for my child, and why?
  • Does this vaccine need boosters, and when?
  • What are the side effects of this vaccine?
  • What are the risks if my child does not get the vaccine?


Also known as:

Vaccine Tetanus
Vaccine Pertussis
Vaccine DTaP
Vaccine Diptheria
Vaccine - Diphtheria
Pertussis - DTaP - Convenient Care Clinic
Tetanus Vaccine
Tetanus Shot
Tetanus Immunization
Pertussis Vaccine
Pertussis Shot
Pertussis Immunization
Immunization Tetanus
Immunization Pertussis
Immunization DTaP
Immunization Diphtheria
DTaP Vaccine
DTaP Shot
DTaP Immunization
Diphtheria Vaccine
Diphtheria Shot
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