Tetanus Risk: Booster Shot After Injury

Tetanus Risk: Booster Shot After Injury
Published on, 17 April, 2024. Answered by Dr. Fruwhe Oghenerume and Verified by Dr.Galen Team
Patient Question

Hello Doctor,


I scratched myself on metal that's somewhat dirty, and my last tetanus shot was 8-12 years ago, likely over 5 or 6 years. I'm 23 and it's not a deep wound, but I'm curious if it's dangerous. Should I ask for a booster or wait? How many years is too long between booster shots?



Thank you for reaching out to Dr. Galen. Please find the below response to your query.


Based on your situation, tetanus toxoid typically lasts for about 10 years, but it's advisable to receive booster shots after exposure to cuts or injuries for safety. Since you've been exposed, it's recommended to get a booster shot. Keep the wound exposed for proper aeration, and consider taking antibiotics like ampiclox 1g every 6 hours for five days. Also, clean the wound with antiseptic solution every other day. 



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