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Our sincere condolences to family and friends of Bristol student Izzy Gentry who has died of suspected meningitis.
Personal stories presenting a unique picture of how meningitis and septicaemia have affected individuals, families and whole communities. Meningococcal disease is an infection caused by meningococcus bacteria and can cause severe infections including Meningitis (an infection of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord) and Septicaemia (an infection of the blood stream). Skin rash of small red or purple spots or bruises, which do not turn white when you push on them. Symptoms show up between 2-10 days after your child has come into contact with meningococcus. Have your child immunised against this disease.  Children whose parents smoke are at greater risk. If your child is sent home after being assessed by a doctor and does not improve return them promptly to hospital.
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Most cases of meningitis are caused by viruses (viral meningitis) or bacteria (bacterial meningitis).
Viral meningitis is caused by viruses like enteroviruses, which are very common in summer and early fall.
If you or someone you know has these symptoms a€” especially if you've been around someone with meningitis a€” be sure to talk to a doctor. Washing your hands really well and often is one way to defend against meningitis and other infections.
If you've been in close contact with someone who has bacterial meningitis, see your doctor, even if you have no symptoms.

To diagnose meningitis, a doctor may do a spinal tap, in which a small amount of the cerebrospinal fluid is removed and tested in a lab. Bacterial meningitis is treated in the hospital with intravenous antibiotics (through an IV a€” a drip that delivers the medication directly into a person's vein). Doctors may also prescribe corticosteroids to protect a person from hearing loss as a result of bacterial meningitis. If the meningitis is viral, it usually goes away on its own (antibiotics are not effective in treating this type of meningitis because it's not caused by bacteria).
Clinical manifestations include fever, nuchal rigidity, seizures, severe headache, petechial rash, stupor, focal neurologic deficits, hydrocephalus, and coma. Lyme meningitis is generally less severe than other forms of bacterial meningitis and is not fatal.continueWhat Are the Signs and Symptoms? Although it may be difficult to identify which type a person has, a doctor can often find out by doing tests.
However, because it can be so serious, doctors now recommend that all teens get vaccinated against meningococcal meningitis (the type caused by Neisseria meningitides bacteria).
If you have a medical condition that affects your immune system, for example, a doctor may also recommend a vaccination against the S. Early detection and treatment of meningitis are very important to avoid serious health problems.
If the meningitis is bacterial, this can help the doctor decide which type of antibiotic to prescribe. Antibiotic treatment for bacterial meningitis may last for a couple of weeks, although a person may not need to spend the full time in a hospital. If there are problems caused by the infection, the doctor will need to treat those problems, too.

The organism is usually transmitted via nasopharyngeal secretions and is a leading cause of meningitis in children and young adults. Some cases of meningitis happen after head injuries, certain cancers or other diseases, or reactions to medications. The most common bacteria that cause bacterial meningitis in teens are Streptococcus pneumoniae and Neisseria meningitidis. To find out more about the infection, sometimes the doctor will also do a brain scan (called a CT scan). Sometimes people can have permanent brain damage from the disease a€” especially if it is not diagnosed and treated quickly a€” so if you have symptoms, it's important to get checked out and treated right away.
We spend around ?1m a year in the UK supporting those affected and providing free information to the public and health care professionals.
Organisms from neisseria meningitidis serogroups A, B, C, Y, and W-135 have been reported to cause meningitis. People can spread the infection when they touch surfaces that others touch or when they sneeze without covering their mouths. People can spread them through throat and respiratory secretions a€” for example, by coughing or kissing. Enteroviruses begin to multiply in the digestive tract and can spread through the body to cause meningitis.
Even after a person starts taking antibiotics for meningitis, the infection can still spread to others for at least 24 hours.

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