oa South African Medical Journal - The Schick reactions and diphtheria immunisation of a South African field hospital staff in the Middle East

Volume 17, Issue 7
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



The Schick reactions of 341 members of a South African hospital staff have been analysed. Schick-positive reactors were immunised with formol toxoid (anatoxine), the sensitivity of the subjects to this vaccine being determined simultaneously with their Schick-reaction (Moloney test). Moloney reactions were more frequent and more severe in Schick-negative subjects. It is, therefore, preferable to postpone the Moloney test until the Schick reaction has been determined. No apparent advantage could be discerned in commencing immunisation with smaller doses of toxoid in severe Moloney Schick-positive reactors, and it is advisable to avoid immunisation with formol toxoid altogether in such adults.

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