Medically reviewed by Zara Risoldi Cochrane, Pharm.D., M.S., FASCP — created by Jon Johnson on November 23, 2018

Tetanus is a rare but potentially dangerous condition that reasons stiffening and tightening of the muscles. The tetanus vaccine protects people who might come into call with the bacteria that reason the disease. Together with any kind of vaccine, it can lead come the possibility of some side effects.

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Tetanus occurs as a result of a bacter infection. Follow to the Centers for condition Control and Prevention (CDC), tetanus kills one out of every ten human being who contract the disease.

The bacteria that reason tetanus may be most typical in building materials such as dust, soil, or manure. Castle often get in the body with injuries that include scratches or cuts.

Share top top PinterestPeople who may come into call with the bacteria that cause tetanus should obtain a vaccine.
Vaccines room a type of medication and, just just like other medicines, there is always the possibility of side effects.

With that said, most world who get a tetanus shot will certainly not experience any type of symptoms.

The most usual side results of a tetanus shoot include:

redness and also swelling in ~ injection sitebody aches

Serious side effects are no common however may still take place in certain people.

Below, us list few of the much more frequent side effects human being may suffer after a tetanus shot:

Pain at the injection site

The most typical side impact is pain at the site of the injection. According to the CDC, this wake up in about eight in every 10 people. This ache is a person’s body having a gentle reaction to the injection, and it have to fade within a couple of days.

Redness or swelling

Some human being may endure a slightly more intense reaction from the injection, bring about their skin approximately the injection site to become red and also swollen.

The CDC say the one in four civilization will endure redness or swelling. Over-the-counter (OTC) drugs for pain, consisting of ibuprofen (Advil) or paracetamol (Tylenol), may help.

Mild fever

Although that is rarer than the other usual side effects, some civilization may build a low-grade fever in response to the tetanus vaccine. The fever must subside there is no intervention, but, again, OTC medicine may assist ease symptoms.


Some human being experience a headache after ~ a tetanus injection. This side result is generally nothing serious, and also OTC drugs may assist ease symptoms.

Tiredness or fatigue

People receiving a tetanus shot may feel exhausted or have general exhaustion afterward. This is typically a solution to the inoculation as the human body pools its energy to construct up that immunity.

The CDC estimate that one in four people will experience tiredness. It may be finest for a human being to let these symptoms operation their course, and also to acquire as lot rest as possible.

Sore joints or chills

The Tdap vaccine, i m sorry protects against tetanus, diphtheria, and whooping cough, is sometimes provided as an different to the tetanus and also diphtheria vaccine and also may likewise cause a human being to suffer sore joints or cold storage over your body.

The CDC approximates this may happen in about one in every 10 cases, but the symptoms usually execute not interfere with daily life. OTC medicines may aid in these instances as well.

Some side results are classified together moderate, meaning they may interfere through someone’s day-to-day activities, however they perform not need medical intervention.


It is possible for world to suffer a fever as a reaction come the tetanus vaccine. The CDC take into consideration this a relatively rare occurrence, however.

Though the symptom may make someone feeling unwell, they carry out not typically require clinical attention. Drinking plenty of fluids and also getting remainder should help to speed up recovery.

Nevertheless, anyone with a heat that lasts much more than a couple of job or who has actually signs that dehydration must seek clinical attention.

Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea

Share on PinterestSome forms of the tetanus vaccine can reason nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.

Some develops of the tetanus vaccine, such together the Tdap, may reason gastrointestinal symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.

The CDC estimate that one come three people in 100 will have actually moderate gastrointestinal symptom after the Tdap vaccine.

The ideal course of action is come drink lot of of fluids, rest, and eat level food to avoid aggravating the gastrointestinal system any kind of further.

The symptoms will normally subside v time.

Rash or swollen glands

Occasionally, a person may develop a rash or various other skin reaction from the tetanus shot. The glands in their body might swell up together a response to the injection. This side impact is not common and tends to walk away ~ above its own.

Swelling the the arm

Some world may experience much more extensive ede in the arm wherein they obtained the injection.

The CDC estimate that one in every 500 world may suffer swelling that their whole arm ~ an injection the the Tdap vaccine. However, it describes this as a middle effect, which go not generally need medical intervention.

Below room some more severe side effects that can result from the tetanus shot and also may need clinical attention.

Swelling and also severe pain, redness, or bleeding

In rare cases, swelling, redness, and severe ache may happen after the injection. The skin might break and bleed together a solution to the vaccine. This occurs around the injection site and also requires clinical attention.

Severe allergic reaction

There is additionally a rare opportunity of a person having a significant allergic reaction come the vaccine. The CDC estimate that this kind of reaction wake up in less than one in every 1 million cases.

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Symptoms the an allergic reaction include:

difficulty breathing or swallowingitchy throat, feet, or handsswelling in the face, eyes, or airwayssudden significant fatiguerapid heartbeat

The reaction would begin to happen between a few minutes come a couple of hours ~ receiving the injection, and also it requires immediate medical attention.