Pneumococcal meningitis is an infection that causes swelling and irritation (inflammation) of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord (meninges).
The Brong Ahafo region in Ghana has so far seen 21 cases of the disease since it’s outbreak beginning of the year.
Health Officials in Techiman in the Brong Ahafo Region increased surveillance and monitoring following the death of six people from Pneumococcal meningitis infections.
Yen.com.gh presents facts you should know about Pneumococcal meningitis.
Pneumococcal meningitis is transmitted from person to person – the bacteria spread through tiny droplets from an infected person’s mouth, throat, or nose.For example, if someone with the infection coughs or sneezes on or near you, you may contract the disease.
You can also contract the disease from an infected person by kissing or by sharing anything that comes into contact with the mouth such as: cup, fork, spoon, straw, lipstick, etc.
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Symptoms of pneumococcal meningitis usually come on rapidly - an infected person may develop the following common symptoms: chest pain, chills, confusion, cough, headache, high fever etc.
Most cases of Pneumococcal meningitis are in children under two years of age, elderly adults and people with risk factors.
In babies, meningitis may cause poor eating and drinking, low alertness, and vomiting.
The only way to protect against pneumococcal disease is vaccination. The Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV) for babies and children and the Pneumococcal Polysaccharide Vaccine (PPV) for adults.
Pneumococcal meningitis is treated with high doses of antibiotics, given by vein. Vaccine prevention is available.