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Tetanus and Workplace Injuries

When an Iowa resident incurs an injury on the job, he or she usually does not consider the possibility of developing a secondary condition. However, sometimes workers may develop tetanus.

A wide variety of injuries may cause a person to incur tetanus. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, tetanus is a bacterial infection. This bacteria can enter the human body when someone sustains a crush injury or a burn. Puncture wounds can also lead to tetanus and people might develop this condition if their wound comes into contact with dirt and other contaminants. Sometimes compound fractures and superficial wounds may also lead to this infection. People do not always develop tetanus right after their injury occurs. The bacteria typically go through an incubation period and most people begin to experience symptoms up to two weeks after sustaining a wound.

If a person develops tetanus, there are several symptoms he or she might experience. The Mayo Clinic says that people typically have trouble swallowing and may experience body spasms. Additionally, many people may have stiff muscles, especially around their abdomen, neck, and jaw. Sometimes people might have an accelerated heart rate or a fever. If people think they have tetanus, it is important to see a doctor. This is because tetanus does not have a cure. Most physicians help patients treat the effects of the disease and stop this treatment when the bacteria have left the patient's body. Because of this, it is a good idea for people to seek medical care early.

People can usually avoid incurring tetanus by making sure they receive the vaccination. Some people may want to look over their medical records to check when they last received a tetanus vaccine. If it is has been several years, people may want to make an appointment to receive this vaccination, especially if they work in an industry in which they might come into contact with contaminated objects, such as construction.