Is it possible for people to get smallpox from the vaccination?
No. The smallpox vaccine does not contain smallpox virus and cannot spread or cause smallpox. However the vaccine does contain another virus called vaccinia, which is "live" in the vaccine. Because the virus is live, it can spread to other parts of the body or to other people from the vaccine site. This can be prevented through proper care of the vaccination site (e.g., hand washing and careful disposal of used bandages). For that reason, the vaccine site must be cared for carefully.

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1. What should I know about smallpox?
2. How serious is the smallpox threat?
3. What are the symptoms of smallpox?
4. If someone comes in contact with smallpox, how long does it take to show symptoms?
5. Is smallpox fatal?
6. How is smallpox spread?
7. If smallpox is released in aerosol form, how long does the virus survive?
8. How many people would have to get smallpox before it is considered an outbreak?
9. Is smallpox contagious before the smallpox symptoms show?
10. Is there any treatment for smallpox?
11. What is the smallpox vaccine, and is it still required?
12. Should I get vaccinated against smallpox?
13. How is the vaccine given?
14. What is the smallpox vaccine made of?
15. Is it possible for people to get smallpox from the vaccination?
16. Is it possible to get vaccinia, the virus in the vaccine, from someone who has recently been vaccinated?
17. How safe is the smallpox vaccine?
18. Who should not get the vaccine?
19. Should you get the smallpox vaccine if you have a weakened immune system (e.g., you are immunocompromised)?
20. Is there a danger to them (or to an unborn child) if broader vaccination occurs, increasing the potential for contact with vaccinated people?
21. Is there any way to treat bad reactions to the vaccine?