Toxic shock syndrome (TSS) is is a rare, life-threatening acute, non-contagious systemic illness caused by staphylococcal or streptococcal toxins. It is characterized by its rapid progression starting with high fever, fatigue, myalgia and gastrointestinal symptoms, and it is associated with a rash. After one to two weeks, the rash undergoes desquamation, especially in the palms and soles. TSS is a very rare disease. The mean annual incidence of TSS is less than 2 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. It can affect men, women and children equally. Menstruating women and post-partum women are a greater risk of developing the disease.
Patients with TSS must be treated immediately and aggressively. Early and immediate treatment should including fluid resuscitation, empirical antibiotic therapy should be done. In case of unconfirmed suspected TSS broad spectrum antibiotics like clindamycin+carbapenem/beta-lactamase inhibitor/vancomycin must be administered. Intravenous polyspecific immunglobulin (IVIG) has been suggested as adjunctive therapy in TSS, since it contains neutralising antibodies against streptococcal and staphylococcal superantigens. Continued epidemiological studies are important to assess the development of TSS to improve preventative strategies. Patients at the risk of developing TSS must be educated about proper use of tampons and wound care.