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Pharmacy and Medications

Rabies Vaccine

09/13/2010

Question:

Hi guy,

If I have been bitten by a dog and been given Rabies vaccine, should I get another dose for booster and how long from the post-exposure dose should I wait before getting a booster dose?

Answer:

The recommended dosing schedule for a patient exposed to rabies includes a 4-shot series of the vaccine. The first shot should be given immediately. The remaining doses should be given on the 3rd day, the 7th day, and the 14th day after the exposure. The schedule may be slightly altered if the patient has been exposed to rabies before, or if they are immune compromised.

In addition to the first rabies vaccine, patients should receive a dose of rabies immune globulin. The immune globulin provides a more immediate active immunity against rabies, since the vaccine takes time to work. Patients who have been vaccinated against rabies before generally do not need the immune globulin injection.

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Response by:

Michael  Ganio, PharmD Michael Ganio, PharmD
Clinical Applications Pharmacist
Wexner Medical Center
The Ohio State University