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standing on a rusty nail

Stood on a rusty nail today went right through my shoe into foot. Have thrown shoes away my foot bled that much. My queary is do i need a tetnus shot? Tried ringing GP but he shuts half day on a wednesday and just get a recorded message to ring 999 in an emergency or NHS Direct. Rang NHS Direct for advice and got a recorded message about swine flu and they were really busy and call back later have rang 5 times now.

My dilemma is i dont want to waste A&E time its not urgent but with my immune system with preds etc i just want to be safe than sorry. I could ask to speak to GP but i have to get through receptionist first tomorrow and i know i will end up having to make an apt which seems a waste of everyones time plus that will prob be next week.

Hugs and nebs to all who need them X

17 Replies

I wouldn't bother with NHS direct at the mo, I tried ringing them on monday I eventually got through and was told all the qualified medical people were talking to the people ringing up about swine flu. The adviser did try to help but he said as he wasnt qualified cound not give me much medical advice, pointless! 30 mins wasted of my life lol!

Id say if you have had a tetanus shot recently, within the the last ten years I think is the recommended time, to just clean it etc and ring your gp asap just to be safe.


Thx claree 22. Not had any boosters for 25yrs and i dont have a great history with vaccines ie flu jab and pneumonia jab etc so am very wary but am trying to be sensible (very unusual for me) but am sure family and friends would think lock jaw a major plus (no offence intended just my warped sense of humour)!!!!!



Yikes just read up about tetanus on wiki dosnt sound very nice at all! The only benefit would be the lockjaw as you say lol! Please do get it seen to though!


Yes, please get a tetanus jab!! I spiked myself on chain link fence and it was Mum who reminded me to get a booster ( thought they now come as a combo with diptheria & something else) Also get someone to look at it as well TOMORROW! (Pops first aider hat on) penetrating injuries like that can drive dirt and alsorts as well as tetanus bugs into the wound. You may need an xray to check it hasn't damaged anything in your foot as well so you may end up in A&E. I know it is a pain going to A&E when it isn't your asthma but a wound like that does warant a trip! Esp if GP busy!

I assume you have cleaned the wounds, dressed them and elevate if sore!

Kate ( Takes First aider hat off!)

PS I had no problem with the tetanus jab


Hi Kate (sheepishly) stuck my foot in a bowl of salt and water, miss, honest i did. LOL, thats about as far as my first aid skills go i'm afraid!

Edit Have just read that i hope it doesnt come across as patronising Kate i really appreciate you taking the time to answer and value your advice. And will get checked out tomorrow one way or the other. Thx

Take care


the jab kate was getting at is now

tetanus, diptheria and polio (poor spelling im afraid)

i had one not so long ago now - to do with a booster cos of age lol


don't think i've ever had a tetanus jab, and the amount of times I've stood on nails, nasty habit of pulling bit of wood of at work and leaving them with the nail stuck up, or cut myself on sharp metal, the body has a remarkable way of dealing with such things and heals.

I thought the polio/diphtheria thing was given on a sort of sugar cube, remember that from my school days, but luckily i was skiving that day.


nope im afraid things have changed since you where at school

its definatley a three in one injection , for polio , diptheria and tetanus these days - im sure a sugar cube would have been much nicer for us who ahve needle phobias

is i said before it wasn't so long ago i had mine a year or two maybe) they are really hot on all these and there is a lot of talk and action on the hpv vacine (i no some years have had it already) but we dont get offered the BCG anymore and TB is suposedly on the rise again(or so i heard on the radio) ,

still just shows how times have changed as my ma says lol


I remember the BCG jab, the ring of i think 7 needles, now you'd love that one, strange though, you never felt it.

Oh, have had the TB jab once, but a long time ago now, and the sugar cube was for polio now, memory starting to come back.


kind of glad they dont offer BCG to everone now then , seven needles and I would have been out before they even got it in my arm lol, ouch can you imagine how many bruises I’d get if I normally get a load from just once injection or blood test lol . oh the good old days i guess. Yes ma mum clarifies polio was a sugar cube


Long time no post I know but I am putting my minor injury unit nurse hat on.

If you have had 5 tetanus boosters in a lifetime you don't need another one now unless it is what is called a tetanus prone injury. Fraid to say a rusty nail is very definitely a tetanus prone injury so if you have not had a tetanus booster in the last few years yo ureally should think about having one. It comes as a triple as has already been said but reactions seem quite rare apart from arm ache for a few days. You should get the wound checked too as you could well need antibiotics. If you can't get an appointment with the Practice Nurse then try a local Minor Injury Unit if you have got one rather than queuing for hours at A&E.



Quick update. Rang GP this morning 8.30am, explained situation to receptionist who demanded to know why i didnt go to A&E last night, i replied because it was an accident but not an emergency in my opinion and that is why i need to speak to my GP, i could have an apt on monday was the reply!! Not exactly what i was looking for, i explained my particular situation again and that a quick conversation with the practice nurse would suffice. The clock is still ticking!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Doesn't the A in A&E stand for accident - guess you should go there, its usually far quicker than a GP, and when I was there last year, they said why didn't I go to my GP. I said he'd only send me here, and they said that is what GPs usually do. Just go to A&E, they are better equipped to deal with it than your GP.


did get a call from practice nurse who wouldnt commit to anything because of my anaphylaxis history and needed to talk to dr and would get backto me that was at 11.30am, i have just rang and receptionist has told me the nurse is in a practice meeting, with the gp i assume. So have packed a book and butties and am off to a&e, it will be a novelty to walk in, well hobble, anyway!! I feel awful wasting a&e time and will apologise but cant think what else to do! Ta da for now, thx for all your wise words, foot not fell off yet LOL. X


Never again!!!!!

Rang GP as a curtasy to say was going A&E and was told in no uncertain terms not to go!! I pointed out i had been waiting nearly 5 hrs for a decision and felt i needed to get some advice, eventually the nurse came on the line and said she was 'in conference with my GP about me' and would get back to me at 3pm with a plan of action. I duly waited until 3.30pm and surprise surprise heard nothing, rang for the 8th time today informed the receptionist, politely , i was on my way to A&E, and set off. Whilst on my way i got a call on my mobile from GP surgery telling me, not asking, to come to the surgery now for a tetanus and antibiotics and to bring my epi pen 'just in case',because the couldnt find any record of my childhood immunisations (even though my mum says i did react to them when i asked today) i bit my tongue and duly went.

On the off chance that my consultant was around i actually rang the hospital because to be frank after todays fiasco i have lost confidence in my GP. When he heard they were actually going to give me the tetanus jab he wasnt very happy and rang them.

I now have a bucket load of abx. oh joy, a very sore foot, and a very serious question as to what if this had been my asthma? I never go to GP with my asthma but if consultant away etc i would have to and now i am worried, think i will be seeing more of A&E LOL. I have been with GP for 25yrs and have never been treated like this, i know its not an emergency but it could have been.

Anyway i live to see another day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hugs to all who need one X


so after all that fuss, you still didn' t get a tetanus jab? what the hell does your GP and practice work like. Must say I thought mine was bad, but I can consider myself lucky, get appointments same day or days ahead, and don't mind A&E visits rather than waste there time with things that are really better suited to A&E care.


Hiya woody-som is that a dig at me or GP? I dont think it was appropriate to go to A&E for this thats what my gp is for in my opinion, but was at end of tether, a phone consultation initially is all i wanted to save all this hassle. Anyway, nuff said am sure everyone bored silly now, i know i am. By the way i didnt have the tetanus due to previous allergic reaction (mums come in handy). If i've got the wrong end of stick apologies its been a bad day:) X


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