Get the shot. Fast. 1998 IS 10 years ago.
Tetanus is extremely painful. I got it back in the 80s when I was mining for gold in Ecuador, and if I live another 50 years, I won't forget it.
We were in the jungle about 190 miles from Quito, the capital, dredging a small stream, when we were caught off guard and attacked by COMMUNIST BANDITS who took ALL our GOLD, our AK-47s, all our equipment--including our 12 in. diameter dredge, the largest in Ecuador at the time, for which we had to get a special permit--and of course they drove away in our two LAND ROVERS.
Earlier that day, while trying to salvage some metal off the remains of a crashed WWII-era Stinson L-5 airplane we had stumbled upon--unlucky smugglers no doubt--I received a fearsome jagged cut that desperaterly needed attention, and now with the vehicles gone, we had to hike barefoot several days in relentless heat and mericless humidity to look for for help. By the time we got to the nearest village, I was in such dreadful pain that I could barely remain conscious, and of course, I could not speak as the lock-jaw had set in.
The maddening part is that I had been rationing the food to make it last, but got the lock-jaw before the last few candy bars ran out! Nonetheless, I was able to squash a few M&Ms flat enough to stuff them through my teeth for sustainance.
Anyway, fortunately, the local Waorani Indians were familiar with SWEDISH UNIVERSAL SIGN LANGUAGE which they used to negotiate exchanges with the various drug gangs and coffee and weapons smugglers who passed through the area on a regular basis, and I was able to communicate the direness of my situation.
As LUCK would have it, tetanus is quite common in the jungle in South America, and the Indians there keep an ancient remedy on hand at all times. It's made from tree bark or frogs brains and 7-Up or something, I don't know but it bloody well worked! And after a few days in their care, and in exchange for the remainder of the peanut (un-squashable) M&Ms, they had me well enough to make it back to Quito in time to be arrested on suspicion of illegal mining--the bandits had taken our permits as well and we had nothing to prove our story!
Needless to say, I eventually made it back home to my lovely English countryside estate in Tunbridge Wells, and after recovering I never returned to the Ecuadorian Jungle again.
Anyway, the moral is, if you know any Waorani, talk to them, if not get to a doctor.