Tetanus is tetanus bacteria which enters the body from the wound, causing symptoms such as opening disorder which makes it difficult for the mouth to open and spasm due to the toxin made by the bacteria, and is a highly lethal disease.Around 1950, the number of deaths was about 1,550 for about 2,000 patients, and the fatal rate was high (about 80%). But arbitrary vaccination of tetanus vaccine was started in 1953, and after that In 1968, regular vaccination of diphtheria / pertussis / tetanus combination vaccine (DTP) by the immunization law was started, the number of tetanus patients and deaths decreased thereafter. It is now 30 to 50 people onset per year However, it still has an infectious disease with a high fatality rate of 30-50%.

Sources of tetanus infection

Tetanus bacteria inhabit and propagate in low oxygen environments such as soil and mud near several cm from the surface of the earth.People will be infected from the scratches made by doing sports. The incubation period is 2 to 8 weeks, generally the shorter the time is from infection to onset, the higher the mortality rate would be.
It is difficult to completely block contact with tetanus bacteria in normal life, so it can be said that any individual may be infected by tetanus bacteria.

In addition, tetanus bacteria are often reported to be infected when people fall down or when they are playing with soils. Because it invades even from very small scratches, so it may be impossible to identify the intruding part.

Symptoms of Tetanus and Prevention

Initial symptoms after the incubation period are: mouth does not open, neck is sticking, teeth do not mesh, ingesting plants becomes difficult. Over time, spasms of the whole body, body bounding backwards, arching deformity, etc. Eventually it may become life-threatening with breathing difficulties.After that, the opening obstruction (the condition that the mouth is difficult to open) becomes stronger, and the tension and rigidity of the facial muscle cause “wrinkle” to the front forehead, the lip spreads sideways and opens a little, exposing the teeth during the meantime, It has a look that is said to be a bitter smile (dreadful laugh).

Because vaccination is said to be 100% closer enough to obtain antibodies, so if you have not been vaccinated since childhood you should check your own intake schedule.

In our clinic we are vaccinating against tetanus at the schedule below.

Tetanus vaccine is contained in a three-part mixed vaccine (diphtheria · tetanus · pertussis), so if you are vaccinated at the age of 12 with regular vaccination, there is immunity until the early twenties (about 10 years of immunity persistence), it seems that immunity may have disappeared in those over 30 years old. Those who have not received additional vaccinations are advised to take another vaccination.

■For people without immunity: 3 times of inoculation.(0.5ml)
Those who are not inoculated within the past 10 years are advised to take 3 times of inoculation.
Those who are inoculated within the past 10 years are advised to take an additional vaccination.

■3 times of inoculations
Inoculation method: first time, after 3 to 8 weeks, after 12 to 18 months
Antibody duration (after 3 times of inoculations): 10 years

If you are infected with tetanus without prevention, you should see a general hospital with medical facilities prepared from the initial symptoms. It may become life-threatening as a result of systemic symptoms as soon as it occurs after several hours. It is not a familiar disease, but it is still a scary disease, so be careful enough.


Tetanus has been vaccinated 4 times in the first stage as a regular immunization in Japan and in the second stage in the 11th to 12th year olds after 10 years. If you have finished regular vaccination, you do not need to inoculate additional vaccinations until about 21 to 22 years of age. But if right at that time you are going abroad or traveling overseas where the vaccination are being recommended, it is necessary to take an additional vaccination.

Normally, in Japan it is rare for people who vaccinate tetanus themselves after 22 years of age, so if you decide to stay abroad after 22 years old, we judge that the antibody is lost and 3 times of inoculation is recommended.Those who completed vaccination three times since adulthood are considered not to lose antibodies as long as they are given additional vaccinations every 10 years thereafter. However, if additional vaccination is not done beyond 10 years after completed vaccination since adulthood, you need to pay attention to that 3 times of vaccinations from the first time will be required again.