What Is Clostridium Tetani?

Clostridium tetani is a common gram-positive, rod-shaped, soil bacterium that is the causative agent of tetanus — a serious infection more commonly known as lockjaw.

History of Clostridium Tetani

In 1881, a German bacteriologist named Carl Georg Friedrich Wilhelm Flügge discovered clostridium tetani at the University of Göttingen, Lower Saxony.

Nearly a century after his discovery, multiple scientific studies were conducted worldwide to find out more about this mysterious species of the clostridium genus.

Those studies revealed that although C. tetani is benign in the soil or in the intestinal tracts of animals, it can cause the severe disease tetanus in humans.

The tetanus disease typically starts with spores entering the body through a wound, especially a deep one such as those from a puncture or contaminated needle injection.

As soon as C. tetani starts growing at the wound site, it releases the toxins tetanolysin and tetanospasmin — both of which help C. tetani spread the infection.

With an estimated lethal dose below 2.5 nanograms per kilogram of body weight, tetanospasmin is one of the most potent toxins in the world.

It’s responsible for virtually all the symptoms of tetanus.

Symptoms of Diseases Caused By Clostridium Tetani

Clostridium tetani is the only documented cause of tetanus — a serious infection that affects the brain and nervous system and causes stiffness in the muscles.

Patients of tetanus typically suffer from the following symptoms:

  • Headaches
  • Jaw cramping
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Jerking or staring (seizures)
  • Painful muscle stiffness all over the body
  • Muscle spasms (sudden, involuntary muscle tightening), often in the stomach.

Although none of those symptoms sound serious, health experts say that tetanus can lead to more serious conditions if it’s not treated right away.

How You Can Treat Clostridium Tetani

Since clostridium tetani is developing resistance to antibiotics, there’s no knowing whether the medicine that can treat it today will work tomorrow.

Currently, doctors typically pursue wound cleaning and antibiotic eradication of clostridium tetani with intravenous 500 mg of metronidazole three times a day, or 100,000–200,000 IU/kg of penicillin.

The treatment typically lasts for seven to ten days.

All that being said, unless you’re already suffering from a disease caused by clostridium tetani, you shouldn’t be worrying about the treatment.

You should be worrying about how to prevent the disease.

Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So why not take safety precautions right now, so you won’t have to face the risk of facing a problem caused by clostridium tetani?

If you’re now wondering what safety precautions we are talking about, disinfecting your home and workplace with a solution that can kill clostridium tetani is all you need to do.

How Alliance Enviro-Tech Can Help

Alliance Enviro-Tech can disinfect both residential and commercial spaces thoroughly.

Our Path-Guard® System can kill clostridium tetani in under 5 minutes, giving you peace of mind to know your property is safe for everyone living or working there.

For more information, contact us to find out how we can help keep your property safe and clean.