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On Monday my daughter fell outside and cut her leg pretty badly. We went to the ER and she needed 12 stitches and they gave her a Tetanus shot as she is not vaccinated. I am still not sure what she cut herself as when i looked at the place she fell there was nothing but snow and ice. While we were at the hospital they wanted to give her an additional tetanus shot because they said the cut was large. I declined because all they had was the TDaP vaccine and i didn't want that. The doctor told me that within 48 hours i needed to give her another tetanus shot and to call another hospital to see if they had a single dose tetanus vaccine. I have not given her the second shot because i think she is fine... but i am now second guessing that decision. Any thoughts on this? Shouldn't the shot at the hospital have been enough? The reason they said she needed 2 was because she is not immunized. Sorry for the rambly post...its late and this whole situation has exhausted me.
 

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If it was just snow and ice, there's no chance of tetanus, and i'm assuming it bled, right? Oxygen kills the spore...and tetanus lives in horse dung..was there any in the snow/ice? If not, i'd say you have nothing to worry about, and skip the additional vax.
 

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Thanks for answering. We live on a farm so there is cow and horse manure around but i don't think there is any in the area that she fell. Its hard to know for sure though because our dogs run through everything and track it around.
 

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and i'm assuming it bled, right? Oxygen kills the spore..
Yes it bled a lot... for a few hours. I put a dry kitchen wash clothe over it so the blood didn't get everywhere and they wrapped it at the hospital until the stitches could be put in but it was still bleeding... would enough oxygen have gotten to it?
 

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A second tetanus shot in 2 days? Has anyone else heard of such a thing?

I took a look at this flow chart, and they say people getting a tetanus vaccine after an injury should receive follow-up vaccination according to the regular schedule.

http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/idepc/diseases/tetanus/hcp/tetwdmgmtc.pdf

I am wondering if they gave her TIG and now want you to give her a tetanus shot? That is the only thing that makes any sense to me.

In any event, if she had TIG she is good to go, in my humble non-medical-personel opinion. TIG is what you want (if you want anything) in a non-vaccinated individual after an injury. Tetanus vaccines are more about preventing tetanus in future injuries, not current ones.
 

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I agree with Kathymuggle, It doesn't make sense to me either. And, if they did give TIG then she needed to have the tetanus vaccine on the same day or wait 4 weeks, not 2 days. It's all very, very strange.

Can you contact the ED you went to and clarify what they wanted and why? Or did they give you a discharge summary and/or send one to your usual doctor?

Also, tetanus spores live in soil not just animal manure.


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If it was just snow and ice, there's no chance of tetanus, and i'm assuming it bled, right? Oxygen kills the spore...and tetanus lives in horse dung..was there any in the snow/ice? If not, i'd say you have nothing to worry about, and skip the additional vax.
I think perhaps *practically* no chance of tetanus would be a better way to express it. Tetanus lives in soil everywhere, not just in dung. Under the snow is soil. Tetanus also can live in household dust. The same dust could settle on a "clean" towel hanging in the kitchen which is then used to wrap the wound. Therefore, just about any cut can allow EXPOSURE to tetanus bacteria. Of course, this hardly means ILLNESS is a forgone conclusion.

Yes it bled a lot... for a few hours. I put a dry kitchen wash clothe over it so the blood didn't get everywhere and they wrapped it at the hospital until the stitches could be put in but it was still bleeding... would enough oxygen have gotten to it?
No need to worry about oxygen getting to the cut if the blood has freely flown out. Blood is an oxygenated fluid. It washes the cut clean.
 

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No need to worry about oxygen getting to the cut if the blood has freely flown out. Blood is an oxygenated fluid. It washes the cut clean.
Endospores can resist oxygen. They germinate into active bacteria when the conditions are anaerobic, which can easily happen if there's a microscopic area of dead or deoxygenated tissue within the wound during the healing process. It doesn't matter whether or not the wound bled initially, when the bacteria was still protected in an endospore. Oxygen exchange occurs in soil, too, and the spores persist in its presence.
 
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