Young woman, 21, fights for her life after becoming infected with meningococcal disease
- The 21-year-old Adelaide woman is in intensive care after becoming infected
- Six people who came into contact with her will receive clearance antibiotics
- There have been two cases of invasive meningococcal disease in SA this year
- An Adelaide man, 29, died last month after contracting a serotype W strain
A 21-year-old woman is fighting for her life in intensive care after becoming infected with meningococcal disease.
On Monday, South Australia Health said multiple people who had close contact with the patient have been identified, and six of them will receive clearance antibiotics.
SA Health said there have been two cases of ‘invasive meningococcal disease’ reported in the state this year alone, compared to just one recorded at the same time last year.
There have been two cases of ‘invasive meningococcal disease’ reported in the state this year alone (stock image)
‘Multiple people who had close contact with the patient have been identified, and six people have been directed to receive clearance antibiotics,’ SA Health said in a statement.
‘Of the two cases, one was serogroup W and this case is yet to be identified,’ SA Health said.
‘A total of five cases were reported in 2020. Of the five cases, three were serogroup B and two were serogroup Y.’
A 29-year-old man from Adelaide died last month after contracting a serotype W strain of the disease – one of the more predominant strains in Australia.
SA Health reported the case after he died.
More to come.
What is Meningococcal
Meningococcal disease is a serious illness that usually causes meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord) and/or septicaemia (blood poisoning).
Rare forms of the disease include septic arthritis (joint infection), pneumonia (lung infection) and conjunctivitis (infection of the outer lining of the eye and eyelid).
People with meningococcal disease can become extremely unwell very quickly. Five to ten per cent of patients with meningococcal disease die, even despite rapid treatment.
Symptoms of meningococcal disease are non-specific but may include sudden onset of fever, headache, neck stiffness, joint pain, a rash of red-purple spots or bruises, dislike of bright lights nausea and vomiting.
Between 5 and 25 per cent of people carry meningococcal bacteria at the back of the nose and throat without showing any illness or symptoms.