217. Protect Yourself against Toxic Shock Syndrome

Toxic shock syndrome (TSS) is a potentially fatal illness caused when certain bacteria release toxins into the blood.

Symptoms are:

If you experience these symptoms, go to a hospital emergency room immediately.

  1. Sudden, high fever. Sore throat.

  2. Muscle aches. Extreme fatigue and weakness.

  3. Abdominal pain. Vomiting. Diarrhea.

  4. Flat, red, sunburn-like rash on the trunk of the body that spreads. The skin on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet peels.

  5. Weak, but rapid pulse (over 100 beats per minute).

  6. Dizziness. Confusion.

  7. Fainting.

To help prevent TSS, follow these precautions:

  1. Never use tampons if you’ve had TSS in the past.

  2. Use sanitary napkins instead of tampons whenever possible, or alternate tampons with sanitary pads during a menstrual period.

  3. Lubricate the tampon applicator with a water-soluble (nongreasy) lubricant like K-Y brand jelly before insertion.

  4. Change tampons and sanitary pads every 4 to 6 hours or more often.

Chapter 9
  1. Women’s Health Problems