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How Long Does Immunity Last After Receiving Rabies Vaccination?

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Posted on Mon, 17 Oct 2016
Question: Sir, I am a vet. I have handled dystocia of suspected rabid XXXXXXX for 4hours with bare hands on 22/09/2016. But I have applied liberal amounts of castor oil on both hands while doing dystocia. I have no visible cuts or wounds on both hands. I have taken 3 doses of antirabies vaccine in 2008 for a dog bite. Is there any possibility of rabies transmission? I have taken vaccine on the same day. But I am afraid. Kindly help. Is there any test to identify rabies infection? If so suggest it.
Thank you.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kathy Robinson (5 hours later)
Brief Answer:
get a rabies titer and testing

Detailed Answer:
Hello,
I know that this is a scary situation, but first of all most rabies is transmitted through bites, so the fact that you did not have any open wounds on your hands is a good thing.

Second your rabies vaccine should still be protective and you can have a titer drawn to see if you are still protected. If not then get a booster.

Since the exposure was pretty recent you may also want to get rabies immune globulin for extra protection.

The combination of rabies vaccine plus rabies immune globulin is called post exposure prophylaxis.
Diagnosis of rabies requires several specimens (eg, saliva, skin, serum, CSF) and multiple testing modalities, since the sensitivity of any single test is limited.

It would be good for you to see a doctor as soon as possible just to be safe.
Regards,
Dr. Robinson
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kathy Robinson (3 hours later)
Thanks for the answer. Doctor I took anti rabies vaccine on the same day22/9/2016 of exposure. As I come under category 2 as per WHO and having been taken anti rabies PREVIOUSLY Shall I have to go for immunoglobulins.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kathy Robinson (10 hours later)
Brief Answer:
not necessariliy

Detailed Answer:
Hello,
That would be the most cautious approach but I think since your risk is low and you got the repeat rabies vaccine on the day of exposure you should be fine. I still think it would be a good idea for you to get a rabies titer to make sure the vaccine has worked to provide you with the appropriate antibodies. If it is low then I think taking the immune globulin would be safest.
Regards,
Dr. Robinson
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Kathy Robinson (3 hours later)
Thank you doctor. But many say that immunoglobulins are to be administered around the bite. That too It is said that on the day of exposure itself immunoglobulins should be administered. Is it possible in my case to get immunoglobulins? Because mine is non bite exposure.and one week elapsed. Doctor please suggest me how get my titres evaluated, like what test should I ask for at the lab. Because here no physician is getting idea about the test. Kindly help.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Kathy Robinson (19 hours later)
Brief Answer:
you are correct

Detailed Answer:
Hello,
You are correct that the immune globulin is usually administered around the bite, but the rest of it is administered intramscularly. You could get an intramuscular injection for extra protection but you may be too far out from the exposure now for it to be effective. It provides the body with an immediate souce of antibody against rabies.
The test you would need to get your titier is a rabies antibody titer.
Regards,
Dr. Robinson
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
Answered by
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Dr. Kathy Robinson

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1989

Answered : 3535 Questions

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How Long Does Immunity Last After Receiving Rabies Vaccination?

Brief Answer: get a rabies titer and testing Detailed Answer: Hello, I know that this is a scary situation, but first of all most rabies is transmitted through bites, so the fact that you did not have any open wounds on your hands is a good thing. Second your rabies vaccine should still be protective and you can have a titer drawn to see if you are still protected. If not then get a booster. Since the exposure was pretty recent you may also want to get rabies immune globulin for extra protection. The combination of rabies vaccine plus rabies immune globulin is called post exposure prophylaxis. Diagnosis of rabies requires several specimens (eg, saliva, skin, serum, CSF) and multiple testing modalities, since the sensitivity of any single test is limited. It would be good for you to see a doctor as soon as possible just to be safe. Regards, Dr. Robinson