One of the most feared infectious diseases for outdoor travelers—particularly children and young adults—meningitis caused by the bacterium Neisseria meningitidis (meningococcus). The infection can appear in outbreaks, most commonly abroad, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa and China.
The infection is spread in the respiratory secretions of humans. The disease appears in many forms, the most common of which are meningitis, pneumonia, and disseminated bacterial infection. The typical presentation of meningitis is fever, headache, and a stiff neck. If the cause is meningococcus, the victim may develop a skin rash, which consists of red dots or bumps, or a flat, more patchy dark red discoloration.
If the dark red dots begin to enlarge and coalesce into large purplish bruise-like discolorations, this is a bad sign. In the worst cases, a victim can develop shock, respiratory failure, diffuse bleeding, and death. Approximately one in 10 victims of meningococcal meningitis dies. Read more »
This post, Do You Know How To Recognize Deadly Bacterial Meningitis?, was originally published on Healthine.com by Paul Auerbach, M.D..