It was the problem of this study to find out the number of people who were given tetanus antitoxin who did and did not initiate and complete tetanus immunization and to find out why they did or did not do so. The subjects were patients from two hospitals who had been given tetanus antitoxin sometime between January 1, 1963, and October 15, 1963. These subjects were contacted through the use of a questionnaire. The 75 who returned the questionnaire were considered respondents of the study.

This sample was composed primarily of men who were married and were members of the white race. Their education covered all levels, over one-third had completed high school. All ages were represented, but the greatest concern was found in the working age group. Half carried hospitalization, and over 40 percent had yearly income of more than $5,000. While they were church-going people, less than one-third of them belonged to clubs and organizations. About half of their families had utilized immunization services available. Few knew the immunization status of their friends. Most people had cars, radios, television, telephone and subscribe to a daily paper.

The responses were analyzed according to the subjects’ knowledge of tetanus, their immunization status, and according to the reasons they gave for completing or not completing their immunization.

It was found that only about one-third of the respondents had obtained the “2-3 shots” for tetanus. Most of this group had been told what they were receiving, to obtain the toxoid series, and that an appointment was made for them. Many of those who did not obtain the tetanus toxoid series did not know what they had been given previously, had not been given instructions for further injections and did not have an appointment made for them to return. These three factors seemed to greatly affect the completion of the tetanus toxoid series.

The reasons for completing the series which were given most frequently were “I wanted protection from tetanus” and “Because the doctor gave it to me following accident or injury.”

The reasons given most frequently by those not completing the immunization series were “I neglected to get it,” “It was not suggested by my doctor,” and “I felt it was not important.”

On the basis of the findings of this study it was suggested that it is important to tell the patient what injection he is receiving, that another injection is needed and to make an appointment for him to return.

LLU Discipline





Graduate School

First Advisor

R. Maureen Maxwell

Second Advisor

Winifred McCormack Edwards

Third Advisor

Nord Nation

Fourth Advisor

Betty R. Stirling

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Tetanus Antitoxin; Patient Compliance



Page Count

x; 145

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website



Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives