Getting a tetanus shot within 48 hours after getting a cut should be soon enough to prevent this serious bacterial disease, reports Go Ask Alice. Health professionals advise getting a tetanus vaccination every 10 years to as a preventive to developing infections.
Tetanus can develop not only in cuts but also in puncture wounds as well as animal bites and scratches. Any wound exposed to dirt, animal waste or saliva can develop the bacteria that produce a toxin, which can spread throughout the body, states Go Ask Alice. A systemic tetanus infection displays symptoms such as muscle stiffness, rigidity and spasms. Tetanus has a mortality of 25 percent in the United States.