Tenivac bivalent vaccine to prevent tetanus and diphtheria

Tenivac bivalent vaccine to prevent tetanus and diphtheria

Tenivac is vaccine by Sanofi vaccines.

Previously diphtheria and tetanus used to be a major health concern in the world. Worldwide there used to be a large number of deaths in children below 5 years of age and even above in adults too due to these diseases. DPT Vaccine is one of the vaccines which is part of the universal immunization schedule. It should be given to all children. It is a bivalent vaccine. It is included in the national immunization schedule of many nations. Still the coverage and acceptance is far below in many nations or parts of nations.

What is the Tenivac vaccine?

Tenivac vaccine has diphtheria and tetanus toxoid. It is also called as bivalent vaccine as it contains diphtheria and tetanus toxoids. This is a combination vaccine containing antigens from two types of bacteria. It contains diphtheria toxoid 20-30 Lf and tetanus toxoid 2-25 Lf. These antigens are adsorbed on aluminium salts. Aluminium salts act as immune adjuvants that immunity can develop effectively when these antigens are conjugated or adsorbed to aluminium salts.

How is the Tenivac  stored?

dT Vaccine or Td vaccine vaccine is stored at 2-8 degree Celsius temperature. It should not be frozen. If frozen accidentally should be discarded.

How is Tenivac administered?

dT Vaccine or Td vaccine is in injection form. It is given as an injection deep intramuscularly. Preferably on an anterolateral aspect of thigh. 

At what age Tenivac shot is given?

· dT Vaccine or Td vaccine is given at 10 years and then every 5 years in place of TT vaccine

· It can be given in all patients above age 7 years where DTwP is needed but the pertussis component is contra-indicated or cannot be given.

What if the Tenivac vaccine is missed?

If missed this vaccination should be given as earliest as possible.

2 or 3 dose schedule can be given to those who are previously unvaccinated

DTaP below 7 years and Tdap above 7 years is preferred than tenivac vaccine as these vaccines also contain pertussis component additionally.

If someone gets the disease should he still get the Tenivac vaccine?

If someone already got ill by diphtheria or tetanus and survived these illnesses he/she should definitely get the vaccine shots as recommended as these diseases do not produce permanent immunity in the body and there is a chance of recurrence of disease in future too. 

What are alternatives of Tenivac vaccine?

dT Vaccine or Td vaccine is a painful vaccine though the pain is manageable at home with medications, still people opt for the painless variant. DTaP is a painless variant. It can be used in children below 7 years of age. For those above 7 years of age Tdap is used. 

Since dT Vaccine or Td vaccine is a bivalent vaccine and it protects against only 2 diseases diphtheria  and tetanus, generally hexavalent vaccine is used to reduce the number of pricks to children. Hexavalent (Easysix, Hexaxim, Infanrix hexa) variety protects against Haemophilus influenzae type b and hepatitis B and polio along with diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis.

For those above 7 years Tdap is preferable to dT or Td.

Pentavac protects against diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, haemophilus influenzae type b (HiB) and Hepatitis B.

Pentaxim protects against diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, polio and HiB.

What are side effects of the Tenivac vaccine?

· Most common side effects dT Vaccine or Td vaccine are pain and fever. 

· Pain is usually seen at the injection site with tenderness. It is associated with swelling and redness. It usually lasts for 3 days in some cases it may last for 7 days. Local cold compresses help to reduce the pain and swelling at the injection site.

· Fever usually occurs after a few hours of injection and it may last till 3 days. It generally subsides with fever medication like paracetamol. In some cases it may be high grade fever.

· Those children who have a tendency to get febrile convulsion may get those convulsions like in any other fever and the fever should be controlled.

· Irritability and crying is seen after giving injection. It may last for some hours after giving injection. It usually subsides on its own after a few hours.

· Refusal to feed may occur after giving injection and can be controlled with fever and pain medication.

· Allergic reaction: Mild to severe allergic reaction may come though very rarely 1 in only 1 million doses it may be life threatening. Though looking at mortality due to diseases this seems an acceptable risk.

To whom Tenivac vaccine is not given?

· If child previously had a severe life threatening allergic reaction to Td vaccine in the past. 

· If the child has a disease that is neurological involving the brain and is progressive in nature.

· For static diseases like cerebral palsy though the presentation may be progressive but the lesions in brain are static and the vaccine is not contraindicated.

Side effects are part of vaccination and if compared to the disability and mortality due to these diseases it appears the side effects are very mild and can be manageable at home with simple medications.

<span class="has-inline-color has-luminous-vivid-orange-color">Dr Yatin Bhole MBBS DCh DNB</span>
Dr Yatin Bhole MBBS DCh DNB

This article was written by Dr Yatin Bhole who is practicing Pediatrician at Bhole Children Clinic, Ravet. This post is for general information and before applying it on yourself, you should meet your doctor or meet us in person.

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