A case of invasive meningococcal disease has been notified in a 25-year-old man from metropolitan Adelaide. The case has been admitted to hospital and is in a critical condition.
The strain has been identified as serotype B.
SA Health has identified multiple people who had contact with the patient, of whom two people have been directed to receive clearance antibiotics.
There have been ten cases of invasive meningococcal disease reported in South Australia this year, compared to six cases recorded at the same time last year. Of the ten cases reported so far this year, nine are serogroup B and one is serogroup W.
A total of 14 cases were reported in 2022. Of the 14 cases, 12 were serogroup B, one case was serogroup Y, and one case was not serogroupable.
Symptoms and signs of meningococcal disease can include headache, fever, vomiting, neck stiffness, and discomfort when looking at lights. A skin rash may occur, with tiny red or purple spots that soon spread and enlarge to look like fresh bruises. At later stages of the illness people may develop confusion and shock.
In addition, children may be fretful, difficult to wake and refuse to eat. They may have leg pain, cold hands and feet, and a high-pitched or moaning cry. Children may also have pale, blotchy or abnormally coloured skin.
Vaccines are available to protect against a number of types of meningococcal disease. In South Australia under national and state funded programs, the meningococcal B vaccine is available and free for infants at six weeks, four months, and 12 months and in adolescents in Year 10.
The ACWY vaccine is available for infants at 12 months and in adolescents in Year 10.
As vaccines do not protect against all types of meningococcal, vaccinated people must still be alert for symptoms of meningococcal disease.
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