Toxic Shock Syndrome (cont.)
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Toxic Shock Syndrome Causes
Toxic shock syndrome is caused by toxins produced by bacteria. Only certain rare strains of specific bacteria produce these poisons. As the bacterial toxins are released into the bloodstream, they begin to overstimulate the immune system in the body. This, in turn, causes the severe symptoms of toxic shock syndrome.
In the most common form of toxic shock syndrome, the bacteria live in the vagina of women who are infected, and the bacterial growth is encouraged by the presence of a tampon. However, these toxins can be produced from bacteria in other locations in the body as well. Sometimes, the location of the infection is not clear.
Joseph S Bushra, MD, FAAEM
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