|What is meningococcal disease?
||A severe bacterial infection of the bloodstream and meninges (a thin lining covering the brain and spinal cord) caused by the meningococcus germ.
|Who gets meningococcal disease?
||Most commonly infants and children, however, there is an increased risk for first-year college freshman living in dormitories.
|What are the symptoms?
|How soon do the symptoms appear?
||The symptom may appear two (2) to ten (10) days after exposure, but usually within five (5) days.
|How is it spread?
||The meningococcus germ is spread by direct contact with nasal or throat secretions from an infected person.
|What are the potential complications?
||Approximately 2,600 people yearly get meningitis in the United States of that number 10-15% die despite treatment with antibiotics.
Approximately 11-19% of the survivors:
Lose their arms or legs
Develop problems with their nervous systems
Become mentally retarded
Suffer seizures or strokes.
|What is the treatment?
||Antibiotics, such as penicillin G or ceftriaxone.