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Thursday, December 5, 2013
I’m a 64-year-old woman with uncertain history of primary vaccination series with tetanus and diphtheria toxoid–containing vaccines and my doctor told me that I need to begin a primary vaccination series. I will also have a swine flu shot when it is ready for administration to the public. Could I have both vaccines in the same time period?
Yes, it should be ok to get tetanus-diptheria immunizations with usual flu shots (including swine flu pending clinical tests still in the development phase) as these vaccines are killed or attenuated. One should also consider Zostavax for prevention of shingles (Zoster), which is live attenuated but can be safely administered with flu shots.
Thanks for the inquiry.
Arvind Modawal, MD, MPH, MRCGP
Professor of Family & Community Medicine, Geriatrics and Palliative Care
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati