Case 109. Tetanus (7 y-o M)
Autopsied case who manifested trismus and opisthotonus
Key words : Clostridium tetani, tetanus
Neurons at the anterior horn of the spinal cord show cytoplasmic vacuolation and central chromatolysis (HE). They are the target cells of tetanospasmin produced by Clostridium tetani.   The striated muscle shows features of grouping atrophy (HE). Inflammation is hardly seen.
A deep necrotic wound in the lower extremity reveals Candida co-infection. Anerobic atmosphere obtained by such mixed infection gives C. tetani a condition suitable for growing.