Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




To retrospectively evaluate the clinical features of patients admitted to the medical intensive care unit (ICU) of our hospital between January 2001 and May 2007 due to tetanus. Materials and methods: Patient vaccination history, incubation period, nosocomial infections, noninfectious conditions, mortality, and length of stay in the ICU and hospital were documented. Results: Fifteen tetanus patients were admitted during the 6-year period. Mean age of the patients (9 male, 6 female) was 60 ± 13 years. Median length of stay was 42 days (range: 30-77 days) for survivors and 7 days (range: 1-59 days) for non-survivors. Mortality was consequent to severe tetanus in 5 patients, sepsis in 2 patients, and myocardial infarction in 1 patient. One patient died due to complications of acute renal failure, and another died due to acute pancreatitis and renal failure. The mortality rate was 66%. Seven patients had nosocomial infections (16 episodes). Ventilator-associated pneumonia was the most common infection, followed by primary bacteremia and urinary tract infection. Conclusion: Although it is preventable with vaccination, tetanus remains a problem, especially for the elderly population. Despite intensive support, the mortality rate in our tetanus patients was high.


Tetanus, intensive care unit, nosocomial infection, mortalit

First Page


Last Page