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What meningitis symptoms you must look out for with disease on rise again?

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CDC reports Neisseria meningitidis variant targeting adults aged 30 to 60. — Pexels

The United States has once again been struck by bacterial infections that cause the meningococcal disease, USA Today reported citing an alert by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The CDC alerted healthcare providers of an increase in patients suffering from meningococcal disease, which is caused by a bacteria called Neisseria meningitidis. 

Meningitis is a serious infection which can have severe symptoms affecting the brain, spinal cord, bloodstream and according to the CDC, can even cause death.

The CDC reported 140 cases of a variant of the Neisseria meningitidis serogroup Y in 2024 so far, targeting adults aged 30 to 60.

There are two types of infections that can stem from meningococcal disease: meningococcal meningitis and meningococcal septicemia (aka meningococcemia).

Meningococcal septicemia is a bloodstream infection, according to the CDC.

Symptoms of meningitis

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Stiff neck
  • Photophobia
  • Altered mental status
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Symptoms of meningococcal bloodstream infection 

  • Diarrhoea
  • Fever and chills
  • Fatigue
  • Rapid breathing
  • Severe aches and pains
  • Vomiting

In severe cases, a dark purple rash may appear.

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