What Is Anthrax?
Skin infection causing:
- Skin ulcers
Gastrointestinal infection causing:
- Sore throat
- Abdominal pain and swelling
- Swollen lymph glands
Inhaled infection—this is the most serious form and can cause:
- Sore throat
- Muscle aches
- Breathing problems
- Brain inflammation
What Is the Anthrax Vaccine?
Who Should Get Vaccinated and When?
- Are lab workers who may come into contact with the bacteria that causes anthrax
- Certain people who handle animals and animal products
- Certain people in the military who risk exposure to anthrax as a biological warfare weapon
What Are the Risks Associated With the Anthrax Vaccine?
- Common, mild side effects include a reaction at the injection site—Soreness, redness, itching, a lump, or a bruise
- Rare, but serious risks include a serious allergic reaction—This condition is usually associated with anaphylaxis , which is an extreme allergic response.
- Other serious adverse events may also occur.
Who Should Not Get Vaccinated?
- Anyone who has had an allergic reaction to a previous dose of anthrax vaccine or any vaccine component
- People with Guillain Barré syndrome
- Those who are very sick
What Other Ways Can Anthrax Be Prevented Besides Vaccination?
- Take precautions when dealing with animals or animal products that could possibly be contaminated the bacteria that causes anthrax.
- Begin a course of antibiotic treatment if you have been exposed to anthrax.
What Happens in the Event of an Outbreak?
WHERE CAN I GET MORE INFORMATION?
Vaccine and Immunizations Centers for Disease Control and Prevention http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines
World Health Organization http://www.who.int
Anthrax. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/nczved/divisions/dfbmd/diseases/anthrax/ . Updated July 17, 2009. Accessed August 29, 2013.
Anthrax. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed . Updated January 15, 2013. Accessed August 29, 2013.
Anthrax. Food and Drug Administration website. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/EmergencyPreparedness/BioterrorismandDrugPreparedness/ucm063485.htm . Updated March 18, 2011. Accessed August 29, 2013.
Anthrax vaccine. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/anthrax.pdf . Updated March 10, 2010. Accessed August 29, 2013.
- Reviewer: Brian Randall, MD
- Review Date: 06/2013
- Update Date: 06/03/2013