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Infections lead to toxic shock in kids?

June 17, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Researchers at the University of Colorado and the Children's Hospital of Denver say doctors treating children with toxic shock syndrome should suspect sinus infections.Dr. Kenny Chan urged doctors to promptly screen sinuses in young patients when there's no apparent cause of toxic shock.

Sinus infections may cause more than 20 percent of all cases of toxic shock syndrome, said Chan.

The study appears in this month's issue of the Archives of Otolaryngology.

Toxic shock is caused by toxins produced by bacteria. Symptoms include fever, rash, a drop in blood pressure and in very rare cases, death.

Chan and his colleagues examined the medical records of 76 children who had toxic shock syndrome. They found a third also had sinus infections.

"It is imperative that physicians, particularly those who are providing intensive care to children, recognize that rhinosinusitis can be the sole cause of toxic shock syndrome in children," Chan and colleagues wrote in the study.

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