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Vaccination & Immunization Message Board


Vaccination & Immunization Board Index


Re: BCG scar
May 31, 2007
Juliet, if you are only 26, then alll three scars are probably BCG vaccinations. Smallpox was eradicated in 1977 and the US and most countries ceased vaccinations for smallpox in the early 70's - unless you were in the military. In other countries where they vaccinate for TB, it's usually given to babies and often again in school. Each time you get the BCG vaccination, it leaves a scar, whereas when people were vaccinated for smallpox, the original vaccination left a round dime sized scar (if the vaccination 'took')and it was usually given in your non-dominant arm.....so most people have the vaccination scar on their left arm. Sometimes the vaccination didnt take, even after repeated trys, so there are a few that were vacccinated but did not react to the vaccine and do not have the scar. The BCG vaccine is usually given in the deltoid (upper) part of your arm, the same place that the smallpox vaccination is given. I know a lady from China who has three scars on her left arm from BCG vaccinations. Both vaccines are live virus vaccines and are also administered differently than other vaccines. Both react with the skin and cause a blister within days of administration. When the scab falls off, the tell-tale scar is left, indicating the vaccination was successful.





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