In its weekly morbidity and mortality report, the CDC released information about a 2017 case of tetanus in Oregon.
A six-year-old who had received no immunizations, fell outside and cut his forehead. Six days later, he began showing symptoms of tetanus a bacteria in soil.
The boy’s parents contacted emergency medical services and he was flown to a pediatric hospital. The boy was diagnosed with tetanus the first pediatric tetanus case in Oregon in more than 30 years.
“Very few physicians in the U.S. know how to manage tetanus because it’s so rare,” said Dr. Mark Crislip.
The boy was in intensive care for weeks, unable to breathe on his own. He spent a month more in rehabilitation before he could run again.
In the end, his parents were left with more than $800,000 in medical bills.
Doctors say the tetanus vaccine costs less than $30 a dose and the CDC recommends five doses. Booster shots of the vaccine are recommended every ten years.
But even after all the family went through, the parents declined a second dose of DTaP and other immunizations the physicians recommended.