Thursday, April 24, 2014

DTaP immunization (vaccine)

Table of Contents

Definition

DTaP immunization is a combination vaccine that protects against three bacterial illnesses: Diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (whooping cough).

See also: Tdap vaccine


Information

The DTaP vaccine is highly effective for the prevention of diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis -- all of which are serious diseases. Before DTaP, these diseases often lead to serious medical problems and even death.

DTaP is given by a shot (injection), usually into the arm or thigh. The DTaP vaccine may be given alone or as part of another vaccine, such as Pentacel (DTaP-Hib-IPV) or Pediarix (DTaP-HepB-IPV).

WHO SHOULD GET THIS VACCINE

DTaP vaccination is one of the recommended childhood immunizations. That means, health experts believe all children should get this vaccine.

DTaP vaccine can be safely given to infants. Five DTaP vaccines are recommended. They are usually given to children at ages 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15-18 months, and 4-6 years. DTaP immunization is generally required before a child can start school.

DTaP is recommended unless there is a reason that the child should not receive the pertussis vaccine (such as an allergic reaction), in which case a vaccine against diphtheria and tetanus (DT vaccine) only should be given.

RISKS AND SIDE EFFECTS

DTaP may cause the following mild side effects, which usually only last a few days:

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Review Date: 02/11/2011
Reviewed By: David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc., and Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA, Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine.

A.D.A.M., Inc. is accredited by URAC, also known as the American Accreditation HealthCare Commission (www.urac.org)