Meningococcal meningitis is a bacterial form of meningitis, a serious infection of the meninges that affects the brain membrane. It can cause severe brain damage and is fatal in 50% of cases if untreated.
Several different bacteria can cause meningitis. Neisseria meningitidis is the one with the potential to cause large epidemics. Twelve serogroups of Neisseria meningitidis have been identified, six of which (A, B, C, W135, X and Y) can cause epidemics. Geographic distribution and epidemic capabilities differ according to the serogroup.
In Africa, major epidemics have been occurring over the past 100 years. Most of them have been attributed to serogroup A. The new outbreaks is said to be the C strain and a lot of Nigerians have only been vaccinated against the A strain
THINGS YOU SHOUKD KNOW ABOUT MENINGITIS
1. Over 300 people have died from the new outbreak in Nigeria
2. The disease is mostly caused by a bacteria called Neisseria meningitides.
3. Bacterial meningitis is an infection of the meninges, the thin covering of the brain and spinal cord
4. Symptoms of the disease include stiff neck, high fever, rash, headache, vomiting, and confusion.
5. According to report from the Ministry of Health, 90 local government areas across 16 States including Lagos, Osun, Zamfara, Kano, Katsina, Sokoto, Kebbi, Niger, Nasarawa, Jigawa, FCT, Gombe, Taraba, Yobe, Cross Rivers, and Plateau; have been affected with the epidemic.
6. Statistics from the Ministry, also has it that 2524 people have been affected across the states and131 samples confirmed in the laboratory with majority as meningitides type C.
We should all do the following in order to keep safe • Avoidance of overcrowding.
• Sleeping in well ventilated places.
• Avoidance of close and prolonged contact with cases
• Proper disposal of respiratory and throat secretions.
• Strict observance of hand hygiene.
• Reduction in sharing utensils.
• Avoidance of self medication.
• Reduction in hand shaking, kissing or medical intervention such as mouth resuscitation.
• Usage of relevant stereotype vaccination for meningococcal.
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