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November 10, 1951


Author Affiliations

Beverly Hills, Calif.

From Children's Hospital and the Department of Pediatrics of the University of Southern California School of Medicine, Los Angeles, and The Beverly Hills Clinic, Beverly Hills.

JAMA. 1951;147(11):1038-1040. doi:10.1001/jama.1951.73670280003012a

Tetanus of the newborn is becoming increasingly rare in this country, but because the outcome is usually fatal it remains a serious condition. In his review of 1930, Hines1 collected records of 5,767 deaths and 27 instances of recovery in tetanus neonatorum. This represents a mortality of 99.54%. Jelliffe,2 under primitive conditions in Nigeria, cited one recovery in 25 cases. Obviously many isolated recoveries have not been reported, though the temptation to record even a single favorable result in this disease is great. In reporting a case with recovery, Block and Foster3 refer to five recoveries in 38 cases reviewed by Bratusch-Marrain in two papers. They also mention recoveries reported by Jones and Jenkins. The four cases described by the latter author4 are somewhat unusual in that each was accompanied with a fever of 103.6 F. to 107 F. and each showed an astonishingly rapid recovery.