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Tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis are very serious diseases. Tetanus (Lock jaw) causes painful muscle tightening and stiffness, usually all over the body. Diphtheria can lead to breathing problems, heart failure, paralysis, and death. Rare in the United States.
Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Causes severe coughing spells, which can cause difficulty breathing, vomiting and disturbed sleep. Diphtheria and Pertussis are caused by bacteria. They are spread person to person through secretions from coughing and sneezing. Tetanus enters the body though cuts, scratches, or wounds.