There is information on the Apply Texas application:
(https://www.applytexas.org/adappc/html/bacterialmeningitis.html) here the state of Texas provides information on bacterial meningitis, a serious, potentially deadly disease that can progress extremely fast. For more information you can also go to the Center for Disease Control website:
Bacterial meningitis is a serious, potentially deadly disease that can progress extremely fast. It is an inflammation of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord. The bacteria that cause meningitis can also infect the blood. This disease strikes about 1 in 20,000 people each year with the highest incident rate in 16-25 year olds. There is a treatment, but those who survive may develop severe health problems or disabilities.
Symptoms of bacterial meningitis:
- High fever
- Rash or purple patches on skin
- Light sensitivity
- Confusion and sleepiness
- Severe headache
- Stiff neck
There may be a rash of tiny red-purple spots caused by bleeding under the skin. These can occur anywhere on the body. The more symptoms, the higher the risk, so when these symptoms appear seek immediate medical attention.
Diagnosis is made by a medical provider and is usually based on a combination of clinical symptoms and laboratory results from spinal fluid and blood tests. Early diagnosis and treatment can greatly improve the likelihood of recovery.
The disease is transmitted when people exchange saliva (such as by kissing, or by sharing drinking containers, utensils, cigarettes, toothbrushes, etc.) or come in contact with respiratory or throat secretions.
Possible complications of the disease include:
- Permanent brain damage
- Kidney failure
- Learning disability
- Hearing loss, blindness
- Death (in 8 to 24 hours from perfectly well to dead)
- Limb damage (fingers, toes, arms, legs) that requires amputation
The disease can be treated with antibiotics - which, if received early, can save lives and increase chances of recovery. However, permanent disability or death can still occur. The vaccines available are safe and highly effective.