The Turkish Journal of Pediatrics 2010 , Vol 52 , Num 4
Neonatal tetanus – report of a case
1Department of Epidemiology, University of Kragujevac Faculty of Medicine, and 2Clinic for Children’s Internal Diseases, and 3Department of Epidemiology, University of Nish Faculty of Medicine, and Health Care Centers, 4Bujanovac and 5Presevo, and 6Institute of Public Health, Vranje, Serbia Neonatal tetanus is a severe, often fatal disease caused by the toxin Clostridium tetani. Neonatal tetanus is a generalized tetanus, which occurs in a neonate between 3-28 days of life. The findings indicated that tetanus in a newborn of an unvaccinated mother occurred after the application of non-sterile clay to the umbilical cord. This case was a seven-day-old male baby with progressive difficulty in feeding, trismus, hypertonicity, opisthotonos, and heart murmur. The patient was afebrile and eupneic, and had a history of non-sterile home delivery. In the past, the area of Bujanovac, Medvedja and Presevo had been exposed to mass immigration (especially due to the war in the territory of former Yugoslavia), which caused a serious problem for general practitioners, who had to be vigilant and ensure that all patients registered in their practice were fully immunized. This case has provided a clear indication of the necessity for strategies of both vaccination and ensuring hygienic conditions throughout pregnancy and delivery to prevent neonatal tetanus. Keywords : neonatal tetanus, infection, death, case report.
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