Tetanus (Lockjaw)

Tetanitis is a bacterial infection caused by the bacterium Clostridium tetani. It is one of the most common infections worldwide, affecting approximately 1 out of every 100 children under five years old.[1] The disease is usually self-limiting after two to three weeks without medical attention; however, it may cause permanent damage if left untreated.

The bacteria are spread through direct contact with infected tissue or contaminated objects such as toys, food, water, etc. Children are at higher risk than adults because they have smaller immune systems and are less likely to develop immunity from previous exposure. [2] The infection is generally treated with antibiotics.


Symptoms of tetanic infection include: fever, headache, muscle aches and pains, nausea and vomiting.

In rare cases, tetanic infection can lead to death. [4]

Clostridium tetani is found in soil, dust, dirt and water. It is commonly found in soil and manure from animals such as cows, pigs and sheep. It can also be found in some fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, potatoes, eggplants and cucumbers.

The disease is very rare in industrialised counties. The risk of tetanic infection increases if the soil contains animal waste. [5]

Tetanic infection is a severe and often fatal condition. It affects people of all ages but is most common in children under the age of five and the elderly. One out of every 200 cases will lead to death.

The risk of death is higher in unvaccinated individuals.

The disease is caused by the bacterium Clostridia tetani which enters the body through an injury such as a cut or puncture wound. Tetanic infection is extremely rare in developed countries. The risk increases if the soil contains animal waste.

Tetanic infection occurs when tetani spores enter the body through contaminated soil or human or animal waste. Tetani spores are found in dirt, dust, soil, manure and other natural materials. The disease begins when the tetani spores enter the body through an injury such as a cut, puncture wound or burn.

It may also enter through the nose or mouth. Once tetani makes its way into the body, it begin to multiply. The bacteria produce a poison that affects the brain and spinal cord.

The initial symptoms of tetanic infection are similar to other diseases, such as the flu. Symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches and pains, nausea and vomiting. The bacteria also restrict the blood vessels in the body and prevent the muscles from relaxing.

This can lead to serious muscle spasms which can cause death.

Death can occur within a week after infection or may take up to three months.

Tetanic infection is a medical emergency. If left untreated, tetanic infection can lead to respiratory problems, seizures, difficulty swallowing and speaking, stiffness in the neck and back and trouble swallowing. In later stages of the disease, paralysis may be experienced.

Death may occur within a week after infection or may take up to three months.

Tetanic infection is rare in developed countries because it is easily preventable with vaccine. It is extremely fatal if left untreated. Patients are usually treated with antibiotics such as penicillin.

Vaccination for tetany is extremely effective and can be given to people of all ages. Commonly, a series of five vaccinations are given over the course of a month. The vaccine is free for all children in grade school and high school and recommended for all adults who are in contact with soil or animal manure on a regular basis.

As with all vaccines, tetani vaccination is extremely safe. Minor side effects such as redness at the injection site or mild fever may occur. More severe side effects are very rare.

It is extremely important to seek immediate medical attention if an injury occurs that involves dirt, soil or animal waste. Tetanic infection can usually be treated with antibiotics and it is always treatable if caught in time.

Prevention is the best medicine.

More than 1,000 People Dead After Drinking Coca-Cola

More than 1,000 people in India have died after drinking Coca-Cola that had been contaminated with toxic levels of formaldehyde. The company has issued an apology and has blamed the incident on a “bad batch” of plastic containers that became contaminated after being picked out of a trash heap and used to ship the drinks.

In an unprecedented move, the company has also offered to pay for all of the victim’s medical expenses related to the incident. This includes all hospital stays, any surgery or follow-up care. The company has also set up a reimbursement program for victims’ families, offering $600 per person.

Some government officials have demanded a criminal investigation into the deaths, which has been supported by Coca-Cola. So far, no criminal charges have been filed and it is not known when or even if such a probe might take place.

In an effort to assure the public that all of its products are safe, the company has introduced an aggressive new inspection program for all of its beverages. The company has also said it will be pulling all of its beverages from shelves across India until each container has been inspected.

The contaminated beverages have been traced back to a warehouse in the city of Bahawalpur. In an effort to prevent more contamination incidents, the company has said it will be shutting down the warehouse and replacing all of the containers in that warehouse.

The last death was reported on May 27th, making the death toll 1,005.

“We at Coca-Cola hope that these actions put any fears that consumers may have to rest,” the company says in a statement. “We at Coca-Cola are deeply saddened by the deaths of these people and hope that the public will keep in mind that our products are safe, when used properly.”

Questions Continue to Swirl Around E.coli Outbreak

Public health officials in the US have called off the dogs on an E.coli outbreak that sickened over 350 people in 20 states.

“We have investigated and now believe that this E.coli outbreak is no longer an ongoing threat,” a Centers for Disease Control official, who declined to be identified, said this week. “This concludes our public health response to this outbreak.”

The investigation started when it became apparent that there was more than the usual number of E.coli cases cropping up around the country, most notably in the states of California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas and Florida.

Investigators were stumped for quite a while, but finally a suspect was identified.

“A Mexican fast-food restaurant chain that served food contaminated with E.coli,” the official said. “We’re not naming the specific restaurant, in an effort to discourage customers from avoiding all Mexican food.”

In any case, the chain and all of its franchises have been ordered to close until they undergo intensive sanitizing by health inspectors.

The CDC has also stressed that no single Mexican restaurant should be avoided and that people should continue to patronize these establishments, as they do important work for our economy.

Move Over, Manhattan… Brooklyn Has a New Landmark!

A new skyscraper in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn has surpassed the famous Empire State building to become the tallest building in New York City.

At 985 feet, the building is nearly twice as high as the Empire State Building. The building, which houses apartments, office space and upscale stores at its base, cost an estimated $3 billion to construct.

The building’s rise has been seen by some as a symbol of Brooklyn’s growth from a second-class city into a vibrant metropolis.

“This exquisite building is just one more example of that (Brooklyn’s growth)!” said Brooklyn Borough President Melinda Katz. “We’re growing more and more every day!

Who knows?

In a few years, we may have grown so large, we may very well overtake Manhatten as the most populous borough!”

Whether or not this will come to pass, only time will tell.

The global dust storm that’s been affecting the Southwest and Central parts of the country is finally beginning to abate. The National Weather Service has lifted all tornado warnings and most remainders of the storm are expected to dissipate within the next twenty-four hours.

The storm, which stretched nearly 1,000 miles wide at its peak, brought record-low temperatures to portions of the Southwest and as far north as central California. Snow fell as far south as the Mexico border.

Tornadoes and record-low temperatures are expected to continue in the Midwest, Great Plains and portions of the South as the storm slowly dissipates.

The storm has been blamed for at least 32 deaths.

Tipping the Scales

“And that’s when I realized I had to make a choice.”

You look up from the page, thinking. The words “choose wisely” appear on the page, but quickly disappear.

What was the choice?”

you ask, out loud.

“To be continued…” the book replies.

You sigh, and put the book down. You still don’t quite understand what the point of the story is, but you suppose you’ll know soon enough.

Your attention is diverted to Kyle, who has brought you a tray with dinner on it. Chicken nuggets and fries, your favorite. He smiles at you, then leaves the room.

He’s really come around since the last time you talked. He’s become a real person, rather than a statue. You’ve spent a lot of time with him, and you’ve gotten used to his presence.

Even when his parents are away, you’re not afraid anymore. You’ve grown… fond of him. Maybe it’s because you haven’t had a brother or sister your whole life, maybe it’s something else. You don’t know. All you know is, he’s nice to you.

You begin eating your dinner.

A thought crosses your mind: the choice from the book.

Should you do it? Is it right?

After all, it is just a book.

Should you be taking advice from it?

However, you soon realize you won’t get any answers here. You’d have to go out in the world to see what happens.

So, after finishing your dinner, you decide to go for it. You head down the stairs, into the kitchen. Kyle’s mother isn’t here; she’s probably in her room, as usual.

Sources & references used in this article:

Notes on tetanus (lockjaw). by JM Pearce – Journal of neurology, neurosurgery, and psychiatry, 1996 – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

Investigating Tetanus (Lockjaw) by GE Coleman – The Scientific Monthly, 1930 – JSTOR

Tetanus after cranial trauma in ancient Egypt by RL Miller – Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry, 1997 – jnnp.bmj.com

Tetanus by WE Van Heyningen – Scientific American, 1968 – JSTOR

Tetanus in children by American Academy of Pediatrics – Peter G, ed, 1997

Tetanus can still be found in Denmark by I Brook – Pediatric emergency care, 2004 – journals.lww.com