One of the most commonly known infectious diseases tetanusis caused by the presence of a bacterium called Clostridium tetani in the body. The tetanus germ, which must be taken seriously and carries the risk of death if left untreated, is widespread in nature. In order for tetanus, which is mostly transmitted through soil and rusty objects, to cause disease in the body, it must enter the body through a wound in the body.
Tetanus in Pregnancy
Another way of transmission of tetanus, which is not transmitted from person to person but rather occurs when the wound on the body meets soil, rust, animal feces and dust, is the contact of unhygienic materials used after birth with the umbilical cord. Tetanus can also occur in the newborn baby if the umbilical cord is cut in an unsterile way. This condition, which scares us a lot, is called neonatal tetanus and is fatal in 60% of cases.
Another factor that causes tetanus to occur is performing procedures such as childbirth and abortion in unclean, insufficiently sterilized environments. In these environments, foreign objects inserted into the vagina and unhygienic substances that touch the body trigger tetanus.
Once the bacterium Clostridium tetani enters the body, it quickly begins to release toxic substances. This substance, which has a stimulating effect on the muscles, after a while causes prolonged contractions and locking in almost all muscles of the body. This condition, which mostly affects the jaw muscle group, slowly spreads to the whole body, causing the person to be unable to breathe and die by suffocation.
Pregnancy and Tetanus Vaccination
Tetanus is a type of disease that can be prevented when taken into account. The only way to prevent tetanus is vaccination. The immunity and protective effect of tetanus vaccination, which is usually given in childhood, does not last a lifetime. It is therefore necessary to repeat the vaccination at regular intervals. In pregnancy, in accordance with national vaccination policies, if the expectant mother has been vaccinated within the last 10 years tetanus vaccine If not, it is recommended to vaccinate after the first trimester. Tetanus vaccine is a safe vaccine, does not contain live microorganisms and does not adversely affect pregnancy. The antibodies that develop in the body with the tetanus vaccine given during pregnancy are passed on to the baby, creating a protective effect against tetanus in the early stages of the baby’s life. If the expectant mother has not been vaccinated before and decides to get tetanus vaccine during her pregnancy, I recommend 2 doses of tetanus vaccine at 4-8 week intervals after the first trimester.