Staphylococcal Toxemia

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Staphylococcal toxic shock syndrome in paediatric burns is a life threatening condition. It is caused when the burn wound is colonised by toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 producing Staphylococcus aureus (13). Mortality of this condition can be as high as 50%. It is not confined to patients with extensive burns, and may occur in smaller burns (less than 10% TBSA) 2 – 4 days post injury. The onset is characterised by:

  • Fever of 38.9C or above
  • Rash
  • Deterioration in the child’s condition a few days after injury.
  • Hypotension, diarrhoea and vomiting may occur.
  • Late symptoms may include renal failure and liver damage

Awareness, early detection and aggressive treatment are necessary to prevent life-threatening or fatal illness.

The Alfred Hospital gratefully acknowledges the ongoing support and contribution of Skilled Medical in funding this project.  For more information on Skilled Medical, please visit
Supported by:

Ambulance Victoria The Alfred Victorian Adult Burn Services at The Alfred The Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne