Skip to main content

Tetanus, Emergency Medicine

Reviewed 06/2017
 


Basics

Description

  • Rare disease in US but still prevalent in 3rd-world countries

  • About 30 cases per year in US

  • One-half of the cases involve people >50 yr of age

  • Majority of cases in US occur in the un...

Diagnosis

Signs and Symptoms

Generalized

  • Most common type accounting for about 80% of all cases

  • Initial presentation:

    • Muscle stiffness and pain

    • Trismus (initial)

    • Risus sardonicus (characteristic facial appe...

Treatment

Pre-Hospital

  • Evaluate airway carefully:

    • Endotracheal intubation complicated by trismus, vocal cord paralysis, and facial/neck rigidity

  • Avoid excessive stimulation because it may provoke tetany ...

Follow-Up

Disposition

Admission Criteria

All patients should be admitted to an ICU. 

Discharge Criteria

None for suspected generalized tetanus 

Pearls and Pitfalls

Aggressive management is indicated for tetanus-prone wounds. 

Additional Reading

  • American Academy of Pediatrics. Report of the Committee on Infectious Diseases. 29th ed. Elk Grove, IL: American Academy of Pediatrics; 2012.

  • Centers for Disease Control and Preven...

Codes

ICD9

  • 037 Tetanus

  • 771.3 Tetanus neonatorum

ICD10

  • A33 Tetanus neonatorum

  • A35 Other tetanus

SNOMED

  • 76902006 Tetanus (disorder)

  • 43424001 tetanus neonatorum (disorder)

  • 240432006 Tetanus with trismus (disorder...

Subscribe to Access Full Content

Sign Up for a 10-Day Free Trial

Sign up for a 10-day FREE Trial now and receive full access to all content.

×