Complications

Muscle spasms disappear after 1 to 3 weeks but residual stiffness may persist. Most survivors recover completely by 6 weeks. Cardiovascular complications, including cardiac failure, arrhythmias, pulmonary edema, and hypertensive crises, can occur and may be fatal. Twenty per cent of autopsies show no obvious cause of death. Other complications include those associated with hypoxia, mechanical ventilation, rhabdomyolysis, sepsis, fluid and electrolyte problems, bed sores, bone fractures, contractures, deep vein thrombosis, embolic phenomena, and particularly pneumonia.

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