toxic shock syndrome

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Related to toxic shock: septic shock

toxic shock syndrome

(TSS). acute, sometimes fatal, disease characterized by high fever, nausea, diarrhea, lethargy, blotchy rash, and sudden drop in blood pressure. It is caused by Staphylococcus aureus, an exotoxin-producing bacteria (see toxintoxin,
poison produced by living organisms. Toxins are classified as either exotoxins or endotoxins. Exotoxins are a diverse group of soluble proteins released into the surrounding tissue by living bacterial cells. Exotoxins have specific reaction sites in the host; e.g.
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); group A streptococcusstreptococcus
, any of a group of gram-positive bacteria, genus Streptococcus, some of which cause disease. Streptococci are spherical and divide by fission, but they remain attached and so grow in beadlike chains.
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 cause a similar disease, called streptococcal toxic shock syndrome or toxic shock-like syndrome. Toxic shock was initially identified among menstruating women using high-absorbency tampons that contained synthetic materials, now no longer used, that bound and removed magnesium from the surrounding bodily environment. The resulting lower magnesium levels encouraged bacterial exotoxin production. Slightly more than half of all cases now occur in menstruating women; nonmenstruating women, men, and children may also develop TSS, as a result of infection after surgery and other causes. Treatment mainly involves supportive measures, such as intravenous fluids and, if necessary, kidney dialysis, but may include antibiotics and immunoglobulin.

Toxic shock syndrome

A serious, sometimes life-threatening disease usually caused by a toxin produced by some strains of the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus. The signs and symptoms are fever, abnormally low blood pressure, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, muscle tenderness, and a reddish rash, followed by peeling of the skin.

Toxic shock syndrome was first reported in 1978 in seven pediatric patients. However, in 1980 hundreds of cases were reported among young women without apparent staphylococcal infections. Epidemiologists observed that the illness occurred predominantly in young women who were menstruating and were using tampons, especially those that contained so-called superabsorbent synthetic materials. A toxin [toxic shock syndrome toxin number 1 (TSST-1)] that occurs in some strains of staphylococci was later identified. These bacteria are known to proliferate in the presence of foreign particles in human infections, and it has been postulated that the tampons acted as foreign particles, allowing toxin-producing staphylococci to multiply in the vagina.

Several hundred cases of toxic shock syndrome not associated with menstruation have been reported. In these cases, which occurred in males as well as females, there was almost always an overt staphylococcal infection. Susceptibility may depend on lack of antibodies to the toxin that occur in most adults.

The toxin has been shown to occur in only about 1% of the staphylococcal strains studied. Moreover, there is some evidence that the syndrome may be caused also by other staphylococcal toxins, particularly enterotoxins. Cases of toxic shock syndrome that were caused by streptococci have been reported. A toxin distinct from TSST-1 appears involved. Persons with the symptoms of toxic shock syndrome should receive immediate medical care to reduce the chance of death. See Staphylococcus, Toxin

toxic shock syndrome

[‚täk·sik ′shäk ‚sin‚drōm]
(medicine)
A serious, sometimes life-threatening disease usually caused by a toxin produced by some strains of the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus. The signs and symptoms are fever, abnormally low blood pressure, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, muscle tenderness, and a reddish rash, followed by peeling of the skin.
References in periodicals archive ?
Defining the group A streptococcal toxic shock syndrome.
aureus (MRSA) or MSSA which produces the toxins, including toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 and enterotoxins A through E which act together as superantigens that stimulate the release of various cytokines, prostaglandins, and leukotrienes, which induce the signs and symptoms.
It was simply the introduction of the tampon into her body, which caused toxic shock syndrome to take effect.
Coverage of the Toxic Shock pipeline on the basis of route of administration and molecule type.
On day 20, the toxic shock syndrome toxin assay (TSST) was reported positive for toxin B, and the mesh was removed.
The cause of death given by the pathologist was toxic shock syndrome.
BATTLE FOR LIFE: Devon Machell is recovering from toxic shock syndrome Picture: MARTIN BIRCHALL
All four women died of toxic shock syndrome, and a research team is proposing "a possible association" between mifepristone and this rare but fatal condition.
The toxic shock syndrome (TSS) crisis is a historical public health success story from which much can be learned and applied to contemporary public health issues.
Exclusion of other toxic shock syndromes or other toxic shock-like syndromes, including sepsis syndrome caused by other bacteria, viruses, fungi, or parasites.
cases had clinical illness consistent with toxic shock and had evidence of endometrial infection with Clostridium sordellii, a gram-positive, toxin-forming anaerobic bacteria.
All of the women had uterine infections with Clostridium sordelli, a microbe that does not usually attack people; however, it can cause toxic shock when it does.