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'Man dies from scratch', Poster informing the public about tetanus, United Kingdom, 1969-1987

Tetanus is a bacterial infection which causes muscle spasms and tightness in the jaw, hence its other name, ‘lockjaw’. The bacteria can enter the body through cuts, grazes and animal bites. If wounds are left uncleaned, the bacteria can spread to the rest of the body. Tetanus is treated using an anti-toxin and antibiotics but if left untreated is fatal. Tetanus is now rare in the United Kingdom due to vaccination programmes. Five doses of the vaccine are required for a person to gain life-long immunity.

Object number:

1999-241/30

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    Glossary: poster

    Notice, usually printed on paper, intended to be posted to advertise, promote, or publicise an activity, cause, product, or service; also, decorative, mass-produced prints intended for hanging.

    Glossary: immunity

    The condition of being immune, the protection against infectious disease conferred either by the immune response generated by immunisation or previous infection or by other nonimmunologic factors.

    Glossary: tetanus

    An acute infectious disease, affecting the nervous system. Infection generally occurs through contamination of a wound. Symptoms include a locked jaw, arching of the back or neck and the inability to urinate.

    Glossary: antitoxin

    An antibody, a type of protein, which is produced to counter-act any bacterial toxins present in the body. It combines with toxins (antigens) in the blood and neutralises them.

    Glossary: antibiotic

    A substance that is used to treat infections.