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Description:This 1968 image depicted a 6 year-old male Louisiana child, who after having received a smallpox vaccination, sustained what is termed an “accidental implantation” of the newly-introduced vaccinia virus. Note the erythematous blush over his cheeks, and inflamed nasal lesion, as well as the overall lethargic posture all due to this accidental implantation.

Successful vaccination produces a lesion at the vaccination site. Beginning about four days after vaccination, the florid site contains high titers of vaccinia virus. This surface is easily transferred to the hands and to fomites, especially since itching is a common part of the local reaction.
• Accidental implantation occurs due to transfer of vaccinia virus from the primary site to other parts of the body, or to other individuals

• This is the most frequent complication of smallpox vaccination (529 per million primary vaccinees) accounting for approximately half of all complications of primary vaccination and revaccination.

• Lesions of inadvertent inoculation can occur anywhere on the body, but the most common sites are the face, eyelid, nose, mouth, genitalia, and rectum. Lesions in eczematous skin, in disrupted skin and in the eye pose special hazards, as the infection can be extensive in skin lesions and a threat to eyesight in the eye.

• Most lesions heal without specific treatment.

High Resolution: Click here for hi-resolution image (9.19 MB)
Content Providers(s):CDC
Creation Date:1968
Photo Credit:
Links:CDC – Smallpox Vaccination and Adverse Events Training Module: Accidental Implantation
CDC Organization
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Copyright Restrictions:None - This image is in the public domain and thus free of any copyright restrictions. As a matter of courtesy we request that the content provider be credited and notified in any public or private usage of this image.