News on Wellness

With Meningitis On Rise, Vaccination Drive Is Initiated!

Vaccination

Meningitis is inflammation of meninges or three membranes which along with the cerebrospinal fluid, protects the central nervous system. Though the initial symptoms vary,  common signs are nausea, intense body pains, rashes under skin, and high body temperature. It is found fatal, if not diagnosed in time. In the recent events three deaths have been reported by the Los Angeles County health officials out of eight people who contracted meningitis.  Out of the three men, two were HIV positive. In the light of the events the health department has issued free vaccination drive. It is curious to see that this infection is on rise among homosexual men and those with weakened immunity due to HIV-AIDS.

Vaccination

Bacterial meningitis, 90% of which occurs due to Haemophilus influenza type B is more serious, but has been controlled over the recent years due to improved vaccination. In the recent death case, gay men around 27 to 28 years of age have contracted the invasive meningitis.

The health department reports that invasive meningitis spreads through close contact with the infected person, through air droplets in sneeze or cough, and even through oral fluids. It is however less contagious than influenza. The medical director of Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian centre, Dr. Robert Bolan adds that meningitis is not an endemic and needs to be understood to put under control. He states, “There’s a pretty strong signal that men who have sex with men, at least those who are HIV positive, are at increased risk for invasive meningococcal disease.” Weakened immune system helps this rare disease spread through blood and spine and even cause death. Earlier in 2012, there have been thirty two reports on meningitis. This time too AIDS Healthcare Foundation has initiated vaccination drive to control meningitis spread. We can all hope that this menace is put under check with fast initiatives and awareness.

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