What were the earliest signs or symptoms of botulism in you or someone you know?
Share your story with others:
MedicineNet appreciates your comment. Your comment may be displayed on the site and will always be published anonymously.
What are botulism symptoms and signs?
The classic symptoms of botulism include
muscle weakness (resulting in a flaccid paralysis).
The classic symptoms may also be accompanied by other symptoms and signs such as
abdominal discomfort or pain,
shortness of breath,
slow or absent reflexes,
Constipation may occur. The doctor's examination may reveal that the gag reflex and the deep tendon reflexes like the knee-jerk reflex are decreased or absent.
Infants with botulism appear lethargic, weak, and floppy, feed poorly, become constipated, and have a weak cry and poor muscle tone. In infants, constipation is often the first symptom to occur.
These are all symptoms and signs related to the muscle paralysis that is caused by the bacterial neurotoxin. If untreated, these symptoms and signs may progress to cause paralysis in various parts of the body, often seen as a descending paralysis of the arms, legs, trunk, and breathing muscles that can lead to death.