Grey Bruce child with tetanus improving
This Monday, Sept. 19, 2011 file photo shows an empty bottle of Tetanus, Diphthera and Pertussis, (whooping cough) vaccine at Inderkum High School in Sacramento, Calif. (Rich Pedroncelli / THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Published Monday, June 1, 2015 11:03AM EDT
Last Updated Monday, June 1, 2015 11:20AM EDT
A child from Grey Bruce diagnosed with tetanus is improving, according to the Grey Bruce Health Unit.
The child, who was unimmunized, has been relocated from the ICU to a pediatric medical bed. The case is the first recorded case of tetanus in Grey Bruce.
Tetanus (lockjaw) is rare in Ontario, on average one case per year. It is a serious disease caused when tetanus spores get into a cut or puncture wound. Tetanus spores are found everywhere, in soil, dust, and manure.
The disease is not spread from person to person. It causes cramping of the muscles in the neck, arms, legs and stomach. It may also cause painful convulsions.
Even with early treatment, tetanus has a fatality rate of about 20 per cent. The highest fatality rates are found in infants and the elderly.