Q. What is Boostrix Vaccine?
Boostrix Vaccine is a combination vaccine that helps protect against three different infectious diseases – diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis. Boostrix Vaccine is used for booster vaccination against these three diseases in children (aged 4 years and above) and in adults. This vaccine is given to people who have already completed primary vaccination with the DPT vaccine. Diphtheria (a serious throat infection that may block airways), pertussis (respiratory infection known as whooping cough), and tetanus (lockjaw, muscle spasms, and paralysis) are serious and life-threatening diseases, which can be easily prevented with the help of proper vaccination.
Q. When should Boostrix Vaccine not be given?
Boostrix Vaccine should not be given if you have had an allergic reaction to Boostrix Vaccine or any of its ingredients. Signs of an allergic reaction may include itchy skin rash, shortness of breath or swelling of the face or tongue. Get emergency medical help if you notice any such signs. Consult your doctor if you have a severe infection with a high temperature. A minor infection such as a cold should not be a problem, but talk to your doctor about , greater than or equal to 40°C. this before being vaccinated. Boostrix Vaccine should be avoided if the person has experienced any inflammation of the brain or problems with the nervous system within 7 days after previous vaccination with a vaccine against pertussis (whooping cough) disease. If you have experienced a temporary reduction in blood platelets (which increases risk of bleeding or bruising), or problems with the brain or nerves after previous vaccination with a vaccine against diphtheria and/or tetanus, this vaccine cannot be given. Do not use this vaccine if the expiry date printed on the pack has passed or if the packaging is torn or shows signs of tampering. If you are not sure whether Boostrix Vaccine should be given, talk to your doctor.
Q. How is Boostrix Vaccine given?
Boostrix Vaccine is only given by a doctor or a trained healthcare professional into a muscle (intramuscularly), normally the upper arm muscle. Do not administer this vaccine yourself. Firm pressure should be applied to the injection site, without any rubbing, for at least two minutes. Due caution should be exercised, especially in patients with bleeding problems or low platelet counts since they are at risk of bleeding, following an injection into a muscle. In patients with bleeding problems, the dose may need to be given under the skin (subcutaneously). Boostrix Vaccine is never given into a vein (intravenously).
Q. How many doses of Boostrix Vaccine are needed?
A single dose of Boostrix Vaccine is recommended and helps keep you protected from diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis. Repeat vaccination against these diseases should be performed at intervals as per official recommendations (generally every 10 years).
Q. What if I miss a dose of Boostrix Vaccine?
If a scheduled booster dose of Boostrix Vaccine is missed, talk to your doctor and arrange another visit as soon as possible.
Q. What are the side effects of Boostrix Vaccine?
The most common side effects of Boostrix Vaccine are headache, injection site redness, pain or swelling and weakness. It may also cause gastrointestinal symptoms such as loss of appetite or feeling sick (nausea), vomiting, constipation or diarrhea. Not everyone experiences these side effects. If any of these side effects worry you or persist for a longer duration of time, please consult your doctor.
Q. Who should get Boostrix Vaccine?
Boostrix Vaccine may be administered from the age of 10 years onwards, as per the advice of your doctor. It is recommended that adults get one dose of Boostrix Vaccine in place of their next tetanus-diphtheria booster if they have never got this vaccine before. A tetanus-diphtheria booster is usually given once every 10 years to adults. You may need Boostrix Vaccine before the 10-year interval if you are going to be in close contact with a newborn or if you are pregnant. Consult your doctor to find out if you need to get this vaccine.
Q. Can I faint because of Boostrix Vaccine?
Syncope (fainting) can occur following, or even before, any vaccination especially in adolescents as a psychogenic response to the needle injection. This can be accompanied by several neurological signs such as transient visual disturbance, paraesthesia and tonic-clonic limb movements during recovery. It is important that procedures are in place to avoid injury from faints.
Q. Is Boostrix Vaccine safe to use in pregnancy and lactation?
Yes, Boostrix Vaccine is generally safe to be used in pregnancy and lactation. However, inform your doctor if you are planning to conceive, pregnant or breastfeeding before taking Boostrix Vaccine to receive more details on the appropriate time to receive Boostrix Vaccine.
Q. What are the benefits of Boostrix Vaccine during pregnancy?
Boostrix Vaccine during pregnancy provides protection to both the mother and baby by transfer of vaccine-induced antibodies during the pregnancy. There is an additional benefit of reduced risk of transmission of infection from the mother to baby. It actually is a win-win situation. The baby is protected before birth and protection continues even after birth (for the first year of life). Infants are not adequately protected, especially against pertussis at birth. The vaccination for newborn babies, especially against pertussis, begins only at 6 weeks, that might put them at risk of developing the disease and its complications at birth in the first few months of life.
Q. Is Boostrix Vaccine a safe vaccine?
Various studies and trials have shown that Boostrix Vaccine is a safe and effective vaccine. Hence, it has been approved for use and recommended by various medical organizations and doctors all around the world. By preventing life-threatening diseases like diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus, it has proven to be of immense benefit. Boostrix Vaccine is also well tolerated. Any side effects that may be seen with this vaccine are usually minor and tend to resolve quickly.