Mortality-lowering effect of systemic corticosteroid therapy in severe tetanus

Clin Ther. 1988;10(3):276-80.


In a double-blind therapeutic trial, 32 patients suffering from severe tetanus were given prednisolone and 31 a placebo in addition to standard treatment. Mortality was lower in the prednisolone-treated group (31%) than in the placebo-treated group (55%). The women had more severe symptoms and a higher mortality than the men. The results suggest that the addition of a corticosteroid to standard treatment will lower mortality in tetanus, although meticulous nursing care is still the most important factor in treatment.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / therapeutic use*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prednisolone / therapeutic use
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Tetanus / drug therapy*
  • Tetanus / mortality
  • Tetanus Antitoxin / immunology


  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones
  • Tetanus Antitoxin
  • Prednisolone