Tetanus - Get information and read articles on Tetanus sign, symptoms, causes, treatment, prevention and diagnosis at onlymyhealth.com, your complete health guide.
Tetanus can be prevented by getting vaccinated with the tetanus vaccine. Five shots of the vaccine are given over a period of several months to infants and children. Tetanus vaccine given to children is available in combination with diphtheria and pertussis vaccine. According to experts, adolescents should get a dose of Tdap, preferably between the ages of 11 and 12 years. Following that a Td or TT booster should be given every 10 years.
Symptoms of tetanus are caused because of a neurotoxin produced by tetanus spores that interferes with nerves that control muscle movement. Muscle spasm and rigidity (muscles becoming stiff) is the hallmark feature of tetanus. The stiffness starts in the chewing muscles in most cases and then spreads to involve other muscles of the body. Tetanus can be localised or generalised.
Prompt diagnosis and treatment are vital in order to improve the prognosis of tetanus. Some factors which increase the risk of disease getting severe, and therefore that of poor prognosis, are short incubation period, neonatal tetanus, elderly age, and no previous tetanus vaccine.
There is no cure for tetanus. Treatment of tetanus involves wound care, antibiotics (such as penicillin and metronidazole to kill the bacteria), TIG (tetanus immunoglobulin) to neutralise tetanospasmin toxin, sedative and muscle relaxants to control muscle spasms and supportive treatment, such as ventilation and nutritional support.
Tetanus can be a fatal illness. Consult your doctor to know your immunisation status, for cleaning and care of any wound, or if you develop symptoms suggestive of tetanus such as muscle spasm or rigidity (generalised or localised).
Tetanus in most cases is diagnosed clinically based on medical history and physical examination. During physical examination, the doctor will check for muscle spasms and rigidity (such as in the facial region called lockjaw, difficulty in swallowing or at the site of injury), the characteristic features of tetanus. In most cases, lab tests are not required to diagnose tetanus.
Tetanus is a serious disease which has a prolonged course of illness. . Muscle spasm and rigidity may last for about 3-4 weeks and then improve slowly. After the spasms improve, complete recovery can take several months. Recovery is complete if the person survives the infection (there is no residual damage to brain or body in most cases).
Tetanus is a serious and possibly fatal disease caused by spores of Clostridium tetani bacteria. Muscle spasm and rigidity (muscles becoming stiff) is the characteristic feature of tetanus. Currently there is no cure for tetanus. Treatment of tetanus includes wound care, medicines such as antibiotics, tetanus immunoglobulin, sedative and muscle relaxants, and supportive treatment such as ventilation and nutritional support.