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Certiva Patient Information including How Should I Take

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before receiving diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis vaccines (Certiva)?

Any child who had a life-threatening allergic reaction after a dose of DTaP should not receive another dose.

Any child who has had encephalitis (brain swelling) or a brain or nervous system disease within 7 days after a dose of DTaP should not receive another dose.

Before receiving DTaP vaccine, talk to your doctor if your child:

  • had a seizure or collapsed after a dose of DTaP;
  • cried non-stop for 3 hours or more after a dose of DTaP;
  • had a fever over 105 degrees after a dose of DTaP;
  • developed Guillian-Barre syndrome within 6 weeks after a prior tetanus shot;
  • has HIV or AIDS or another disease that affects the immune system;
  • is taking a medication that affects the immune system (steroids, anti-rejection medications after a transplant);
  • has a bleeding disorder or takes blood thinners (such as warfarin or Coumadin);
  • has cancer; or
  • is receiving cancer treatment with x-rays, radiation, or medication.

If the child has any of these conditions, he or she may not be able to receive DTaP.

Children with a cold or fever can still be vaccinated. Children who are moderately or severely ill should usually wait until they recover before getting DTaP vaccine.

FDA pregnancy category C: This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby and should not be given to a woman who is pregnant.

How are diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis vaccines administered (Certiva)?

This vaccine is given as an injection into a muscle. A doctor, nurse, or other healthcare provider will give this injection.

Children should get 5 doses of DTaP vaccine, one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15 to 18 months, and 4 to 6 years. The series should be completed before the child's seventh birthday.

Your doctor may recommend reducing fever and pain by giving the child an aspirin-free pain reliever such as acetaminophen (Tylenol, Tempra, others) or ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil, others) when the shot is given and for the next 24 hours. Your healthcare provider can tell you the appropriate dosages of these medications. Controlling fever is especially important for children who have had seizures for any reason, or if a family member has had seizures.

Side Effects Centers

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration


You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Women's Health

Find out what women really need.