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Tetanus: what are the main symptoms and how to avoid it

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Tetanus, also known as tetanus, is an infectious disease transmitted by bacteria Clostridium tetanus, that you can meet in el suelo, el polvo y las heces de animales, y who dwell in their intestines.

The transmission of tetanus occurs when the spores of this bacteria, which are small structures not visible in the room, enter the organism through some opening in the skin, such as deep wounds or burns. This type of infection is more frequent when the herida is produced by contact with a contaminated object, as is the case of an oxidized nail.

Since infections are very common during life, and can not always be protected from contact with bacteria, the best way to prevent the onset of tetanus is to apply the tetanus vaccine during childhood and every 10 years. In addition, washing all cuts and spiders also helps to reduce the risk of contracting the illness.



main symptoms

The symptoms of tetanus are related to the production of bacterial toxins in the organism and when they appear between 2 and 28 days after the onset of bacterial esporas. In the majority of cases, the initial symptom of tetanus is muscle stiffness and pain near the infection site, which can lead to low fever and muscle stiffness.

If it is not identified and treated as soon as the first symptoms appear, it is also possible to have an increase in heart rate, variation in blood pressure and paralysis of the respiratory muscles.

Get more information about the symptoms of tetanus.

how to contract

Despite being an infectious disease, tetanus is not transmitted from one person to another, but through contact with bacterial spores, which is due to the low availability of oxygen, germination and origin of the bacillus, producing toxins responsible for the signs and symptoms of illness. Therefore, among the most common forms of contracting tetanus, the following are included:



  • Succeeds with saliva or heces of animals, for example;
  • Inheritance caused by objects that perforan, such as nails and agujas;
  • Accompanied injuries of necrotic tissue;
  • Spiders caused by animals;
  • burns;
  • Tattoos and piercings;
  • Rusted objects.

In addition to the usual forms, tetanus can be contracted in a less usual way through superficial wounds, surgical procedures, bites from contaminated insects, exposed fractures, use of intravenous drugs, dental infections and intramuscular injections.

In the same way, tetanus can be transmitted to newborns through contamination of the umbilical cord during childbirth. The infection of the newborn is very serious and must be identified and treated as quickly as possible.

tetanus treatment

Tetanus treatment aims to reduce the number of toxins in the body, eliminate bacteria and promote the improvement of symptoms. In this way, it is normal that an antitoxin is administered to the person, which promotes the blocking of the action of the toxins produced by him. Clostridium tetani and prevents the progression of the illness.

Apart from this, the use of antibiotics, such as penicillin or metronidazole, and muscle relaxants are indicated to relieve the common muscle contraction of this disease.

How to avoid contracting it

The most common and main way to prevent tetanus is through vaccination in the first months of life, which is carried out between doses and has the objective of stimulating the production of antibodies that define the organism against the causative agent of the disease. The effects of this vaccine do not last a lifetime, so you should take a refill every 10 years. Get more information about the tetanus vaccine.

Another form of prevention is through the DTPa vaccine, also called the adult acellular triple bacterial vaccine, which guarantees protection against diphtheria, tetanus and tospherin.

In addition, to prevent the appearance of tetanus, it is important to pay attention and care to heridas, keeping them always covered and clean; always wash your hands; avoid delaying the healing process, and do not share or exchange pungent materials, such as needles, for example.

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Consult a Doctor | Translated by User2937

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The translator user relied on the following text:

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Disclaimer – (English version>) This content has been prepared based on information from research, additional publications, or the translation/verification work of a volunteer editor of this web council. This is a non-profit service. It is strongly recommended that all details and information published be carefully verified. We never allow medication recommendations, medication package inserts or any medication guidance. We never allow partisan politics as information.

Isenção de responsabilidade – (versão em português): Este conteúdo foi preparado com base em informações de pesquisas, publicações adicionais ou no trabalho de tradução/verificação de um editor voluntário deste conselho web. Este é um serviço sem fins lucrativos. É altamente recomendável que todos os detalhes e informações publicadas sejam verificadas cuidadosamente. Nunca permitimos recomendações de medicamentos, bulas ou qualquer orientação sobre medicamentos. Nunca permitimos a política partidária como base para checagem. Para mais informações, leia nossos termos.

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