Vaccines, Blood & Biologics

Information for Patients BioThrax®

Please read this Patient Information summary carefully before you get this shot. This summary does not take the place of talking with your healthcare provider about BioThrax®. If you have questions or would like more information, please talk with your healthcare provider.

What is the most important information I should know about BioThrax®  

  • Only people with a high risk of getting the disease need to get the shots.
  • BioThrax® may not completely protect everyone who gets the shots.
  • BioThrax® may not be helpful after you have been exposed to Anthrax.

What is BioThrax®?
BioThrax® is a shot given to people between 18 and 65 years old to help protect against Anthrax.

What is Anthrax?
Anthrax is a serious disease that can affect both animals and people. People may get it in 3 different ways: by touching something that is infected with the Anthrax germs, by eating something that is infected with the Anthrax germs or by breathing the Anthrax germs. Anthrax can be fatal.

Who should not get BioThrax®?
You should not get BioThrax® if you have had a serious reaction to this shot in the past.

How is BioThrax® given?
You will get a shot in your arm. After getting the first shot, you should come back for the next shots on the schedule given to you by your health care provider. It is important that you get all your shots to get the best protection.

What should I tell my health care provider before getting BioThrax®?

  • if you may be pregnant, plan to get pregnant soon, or are nursing a baby
  • all the medicine you are taking or have taken in the last two weeks, including vitamins, supplements, herbal products, and other non-prescription medicines
  • if you are on medicines to thin your blood
  • if you are on medicines that affect your immune system, i.e. steroids
  • if you are getting treatment for cancer
  • if you have a latex allergy

What are the most common side effects of BioThrax®?

  • Pain, tenderness, redness, and bruising where you got the shot
  • Limited arm movement in the arm where you got the shot
  • Muscle aches
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Fainting

Your healthcare provider can give you a complete list of side effects. You should call your healthcare provider if you have any side effects that concern you. 

You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-822-7967 or to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System at  You may also report side effects directly to Emergent BioSolutions at 1-877-246-8472 or at

What are the ingredients in BioThrax®?
BioThrax® contains proteins and aluminum hydroxide in sodium chloride, with benzothonium chloride and formaldehyde added as preservatives.

BioThrax® is a registered trademark of Emergent BioDefense Operations Lansing Inc.
Manufactured by Emergent BioDefense Operations Lansing Inc.,
Lansing, MI 48906, US
License No. 1755

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Page Last Updated: 09/23/2010
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