Can I drink after a rabies vaccine

Rabies vaccination

Forms of rabies vaccination

Rabies is caused by infection with the Lyssa virus. The pathogen is usually transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected animal (dog, fox, vampire bat, etc.). When the disease breaks out, it's always fatal.

An appropriate vaccination offers reliable protection against rabies. Rabies vaccines can help both preventively and in acute cases. As part of the prophylactic vaccination, the body builds up long-term vaccination protection over the course of a few weeks. A subsequent vaccination is given if a rabies infection is suspected.

Preventive rabies vaccination

In this country, vaccination prophylaxis against rabies is recommended for people who have close contact with bats for professional or other reasons. Laboratory staff who work with rabies viruses should also get preventive vaccinations. The same goes for people who travel to countries where rabies is common.

The preventive (prophylactic) rabies vaccination contains weakened rabies pathogens. It causes the body to build up specific antibodies against the pathogen and thus secure self-protection. This requires a total of three doses of the vaccine - the second dose is given seven days, the third dose 21 to 28 days after the first. You do not have to keep time intervals to other vaccinations.

Good vaccination protection has built up around 14 days after the last injection. He is very reliable. Anyone who is permanently at risk of infection must regularly refresh their vaccination.

For people with a particularly high risk of infection (such as laboratory staff or vaccinated people with an immunodeficiency), the success of the vaccination can be checked using an antibody test.

Post-rabies vaccination

A subsequent rabies vaccination (post-exposure immunization) can save the life of unvaccinated people who become infected. The prerequisite is that it takes place promptly after contact with the sick animal - ideally within hours. The sooner the vaccination takes place, the greater the patient's chances of survival.

The first thing to do after a bite from an animal suspected of rabies is to rinse thoroughly and immediately disinfect the wound. In this way, some of the pathogens can already be rendered harmless. A doctor must then be consulted as soon as possible.

The subsequent (post-exposure) rabies vaccination is a passive immunization: The doctor tones ready-made antibodies against the rabies virus (rabies hyperimmunoglobulin) directly into the entry point of the pathogen (e.g. in and around the bite wound). They fight the rabies virus without delay. The subsequent rabies immunization consists of four to five vaccine doses, which are administered at certain intervals depending on the vaccination schedule.

In addition, the patient receives the "normal" rabies vaccination (active immunization) described above, which stimulates the body to produce its own antibodies.