International travel and health

Diphtheria

Vaccine

All travellers should be vaccinated according to national recommendations. Vaccination against diphtheria is usually given as triple vaccine – DTP or DTaP (diphtheria/tetanus/acellular pertussis). After the initial course of three such doses, additional doses may be given as DT to children <7 years of age; individuals ≥7 years of age should receive a vaccine with reduced diphtheria content (Td). Since both tetanus toxoid (see below) and diphtheria toxoid can reasonably be given on a booster basis about every 10 years, there is no reason to use monovalent diphtheria vaccine. In some countries, adult boosters that contain TdaP are being introduced.

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