, Diphtheria and Polio icon

Tetanus, Diphtheria and Polio

Tetanus Diphtheria Polio


Tetanus is a disease caused by bacteria Clostridium Tetani.

Diphtheria is a disease caused by Diphtheria bacteria.

Polio is caused by a viral infection (Poliomyelitis).

How it is caught?

Tetanus is transmitted through bacteria getting into a cut or wound.

Diphtheria is spread by coughing and sneezing, close contact with infected people or contaminated clothes and bedding. In some instances it is transmitted through unpasteurised dairy products.

Polio is transmitted through food or water contaminated by infected human faeces or by direct contact with an infectious person.

What does it do?

Tetanus causes rigid spasms in the jaw (lockjaw). Painful spasms then occur in other muscles in the body, causing them to go rigid. Other signs and symptoms include fast heart beat, fever and sweating.

DiphtheriaSimple cases cause swollen glands and a cough, with some difficulty in breathing.

Polio Minor illness – sore throat, fever, nausea and vomiting. Moderate illness – Headache, fever and stiff neck. Severe – Initially a minor illness followed by partial paralysis, sometimes permanent.

Can it be treated?

Tetanus Immunoglobulin and antibiotics are used to treat suspected cases of tetanus.

Diphtheria can be treated with antibiotics.

Polio currently has no cure.

Where is it?

Tetanus Across the globe.

Diphtheria Across the globe.

Polio is almost eradicated. The final endemic areas are Afghanistan, Pakistan and parts of the Eastern Mediterranean and Africa.

How is it prevented?

Vaccination. The tetanus vaccine in the UK also contains diphtheria, polio and sometimes pertussis (whooping cough).


The UK childhood schedule is a course of five vaccines which lasts for life in the UK. For some countries we suggest a ten-year booster, as appropriate emergency treatment may not be available.


The UK childhood schedule is a course of three vaccines and normally lasts for life. Some travellers may require a booster dose – this is part of the tetanus vaccine.


The UK childhood schedule is a course of 5 vaccines and in most cases lasts for life. In some instances it will be boosted at 10 years and is part of the tetanus vaccine.

Single injection
At least 10-years (boosters sometimes required).

This Single injection
will cost from




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