Does Meningitis Vaccine Protect Against Viral Meningitis
Is there a vaccine for viral meningitis? There are no vaccines to protect against the viruses that most commonly cause viral meningitis . Some vaccinations can protect you against diseases such as measles, mumps, chickenpox, and influenza, which can lead to viral meningitis.
Is the meningitis vaccine for viral meningitis?
Is there a vaccine for viral meningitis? There is no vaccine for viral meningitis. There are vaccines available for other types of bacterial meningitis.
Does the meningitis vaccine prevent all types of meningitis? The vaccines also do not protect against infections from all the types of each of these bacteria. For these reasons, there is still a chance vaccinated people can develop bacterial meningitis.
How can you protect yourself from viral meningitis?
What Can Students And Employees Do
Get vaccinated. Make sure you were vaccinated less than three years ago and, if not, get a booster. This vaccine loses effectiveness after a few years. Getting vaccinated can help break the spread of the bacteria that causes meningococcal disease from person to person.
Take steps to prevent the spread of the bacteria by limiting close, intimate contact with others and avoid sharing items that expose you to the saliva of others, such as sharing drinking containers, eating utensils or food, and pipes, cigarettes, bongs, joints or hookahs.
Anyone with symptoms of meningococcal disease should seek medical attention. If symptoms worsen, continue to seek medical attention even if you saw a doctor within several hours. During business hours, students can access the CSU Health Network by calling a meningococcal disease line at 970-491-2147 or visiting the Hartshorn Building. After hours or in an emergency, students or employees should seek emergency care at local hospitals.
Boost Your Immune System
When you get an infection, your immune system kicks in and works to fight it off. A healthy immune system can help prevent an infection from the viruses and bacteria that cause meningitis. Keep your immune system at its fighting best by eating healthy including fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins and by getting regular exercise. Also, be sure to get the sleep you need.
Taking good care of your overall health becomes even more important if you have a chronic condition that compromises your immune system, either directly or through the medications you take to control it, Vassallo notes.
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Two Types Of Meningitis Vaccine:
Two categories of meningitis vaccine are available at UHS, quadrivalent vaccine and meningitis B vaccine.
Quadrivalent vaccine is routinely recommended for our incoming first-year students, especially for those living in residence halls:
- Protects against four strains , which cause 2/3 of meningitis cases
- Brand names are Menactra, Menomune and Menveo
- Recommended for adolescents 11-18 years old and certain others first-year college students living in residence halls are at increased risk of disease
- For more information including side effects and contraindications, see CDC Vaccine Information Statement
Meningitis B vaccine expands protection against this serious but rare infection.
People ages 16 -23 years old are eligible to receive this vaccine, and ages 16 -18 years are the preferred ages for vaccination.
People 10 years or older who are at increased risk are recommended to receive the vaccine, including:
- People at risk because of a serogroup B meningococcal disease outbreak
- Anyone whose spleen is damaged or has been removed
- Anyone with a rare immune system condition called persistent complement component deficiency
- Anyone taking a drug called eculizumab
- Microbiologists who routinely work with isolates of N. meningitidis
- Protects against strain B, which causes 1/3 of meningitis cases
- Brand names are Bexsero and Trumenba, which are both offered at UHS.
- Is relatively expensive, so be sure to check whether it is covered by your health insurance.
Why Do Teens Need A Meningococcal Vaccine
Of the 1,000-2,600 people who get meningococcal disease each year, one-third are teens and young adults. Ten percent to 15% of those who get sick with the disease will die, even with antibiotic treatment. As many as 20% of the survivorswill have permanent side effects, such as hearing loss or brain damage.
The immunization can help prevent this serious disease.
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Common Symptoms In Children And Adults
- Sleepiness or trouble waking up from sleep
- Lack of appetite
Most people with mild viral meningitis usually get better on their own within 7 to 10 days.
Initial symptoms of viral meningitis are similar to those for bacterial meningitis. However, bacterial meningitis is usually severe and can cause serious complications, such as brain damage, hearing loss, or learning disabilities. The pathogens that cause bacterial meningitis can also be associated with another serious illness, . Sepsis is the bodys extreme response to infection. Without timely treatment, sepsis can quickly lead to tissue damage, organ failure, and death.
See a doctor right away if you think you or your child might have meningitis. A doctor can determine if you have the disease, what is causing it, and the best treatment.
How Can I Protect Myself Against Meningitis
There are a number of vaccines which protect against meningitis, and children should receive most of these as part of the NHS vaccine schedule.
The vaccine that is particularly advised to fresher students heading to university and college is the Meningitis ACWY vaccine.
It offers protection against four types of bacteria which can cause meningitis and blood poisoning in the form of scepticaemia, which can be deadly if not treated quickly.
Most people receive it when they are around 14 in Scotland, and those who missed should be offered another chance to get the jab later on in their school careers.
However, if you haven’t had the jab and are heading to university, you can still get it at your GP surgery.
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What Are The Side Effects
About half of people who get a MenACWY vaccine have mild side effects following vaccination:
- Redness or pain where they got the shot
These reactions usually get better on their own within 1 to 2 days, but serious reactions are possible.
Following a MenB shot, more than half of people who get the vaccine will have mild problems:
- Soreness, redness, or swelling where you got the shot
Other Vaccines To Prevent Meningitis
Vaccines can prevent many of the diseases that could lead to meningitis. Most of these shots are routinely given to young children. Some of these include:
Haemophilus influenzae type B vaccine. It prevents infections that cause pneumonia, meningitis, and other problems. Kids get it when they’re between 2 months and 15 months old. It’s also given to children over age 5 or adults with certain medical conditions. While Hib used to be the most likely cause of bacterial meningitis in children under age 5, the vaccine has made it very rare.
Pneumococcal vaccines. They protect against bacterial meningitis. There are two types. Doctors give the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine to children under age 2. The pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine is recommended for all adults over 65. Some younger adults and children with a missing spleen, weakened immune systems, and certain long-term diseases may also need it.
MMR vaccine. Children need it to protect them from meningitis that can develop from measles and mumps.
Varicella vaccineand shingles vaccine. They target the varicella virus, which can potentially lead to viral meningitis.
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How Is Meningitis Treated
Your treatment is determined by the cause of your meningitis.
Bacterial meningitis requires immediate hospitalization. Early diagnosis and treatment will prevent brain damage and death. Bacterial meningitis is treated with intravenous antibiotics. Theres no specific antibiotic for bacterial meningitis. It depends on the bacteria involved.
Fungal meningitis is treated with antifungal agents.
Parasitic meningitis may either involve treating just the symptoms or attempting to treat the infection directly. Depending on the cause, this type may get better without antibiotic treatment. If it worsens, however, your doctor may try to treat the infection itself.
Viral meningitis may resolve on its own, but some causes of viral meningitis will be treated with intravenous antiviral medications.
Is Meningococcal Disease Serious
Meningococcal meningitis and bloodstream infections can be very serious, even deadly. The infections progress quickly. Someone can go from being healthy to very ill in 48 hours or less. Even if they get treatment, about 10 to 15 out of 100 people with meningococcal disease will die from it. Long-term disabilities from having meningococcal disease include loss of limbs, deafness, nervous system problems, and brain damage.
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How Meningitis Is Spread
Germs that cause meningitis can be spread:
- During birth. A mother can pass germs that cause meningitis to her baby even if the mother doesn’t have symptoms. Delivering a baby by caesarean section rather than through the birth canal doesn’t always protect the baby from getting the infection. Both bacteria and viruses can be transmitted this way.
- Through stool. Stool could have enteroviruses or certain types of bacteria in it. Washing hands on a regular basis can help prevent you and your children from getting infected this way. More children than adults get meningitis this way.
- Through coughing and sneezing. Infected people can pass certain bacteria that are normally found in saliva or mucus in their noses and throats.
- Through kissing, sexual contact, or contact with infected blood. Some viruses also can cause meningitis and can be passed from an infected person to another person through blood, sexual contact, or kissing.
- From eating certain foods. Eating food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes bacteria can cause meningitis. Those at greater risk for this include pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems.
- From rodents and insects . For example, leptospirosis is a disease caused by bacteria that is spread through water or plants contaminated by the urine of infected mice, hamsters, and rats. And the St. Louis encephalitis and West Nile viruses are spread through mosquito bites.
Why The Meningitis B Vaccine Is Used
There are many reasons that the meningitis B vaccine was developed and why you would want to protect yourself and those you love against it.
Meningitis B is a serious disease that progresses quickly and can lead to death. The mortality rate from meningitis B in the United States is about 10 to 15 percent when treated and up to 50 percent when untreated. Its also possible to develop long-term conditions such as hearing loss or even brain damage after recovering from meningitis B.
The MenB bacterial infection is passed between people through saliva and respiratory fluids. Activities like sharing drinks, kissing, or coughing can spread the bacterium. The meningitis B vaccine can help reduce transmission between people and prevent or manage outbreaks.
Unlike many diseases, meningitis B is most common in young people. Infants and young children are at the highest risk. Adolescents and young adults are at the next highest risk of infection.
Between 2013 and 2018, meningococcal disease outbreaks occurred at 10 universities and led to two deaths. All 10 universities implemented MenB vaccination to prevent further spread.
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Can Meningitis Be Prevented
The best way to protect your child from meningitis is to make sure he or she gets all the standard immunizations for children. These include shots for measles, chickenpox, Haemophilus influenzae type b disease, and pneumococcal infection.
Talk to your doctor about whether you or your child also needs the meningococcal vaccine, which is a shot to prevent bacterial meningitis. Each province and territory has its own age guideline for the vaccine. Check with your local health unit for the guideline in your area.
The National Advisory Committee on Immunization recommends the meningococcal vaccine for:footnote 1
- Children younger than 5.
- Children 2 and older who have a high risk for getting and having severe problems from meningitis.
- Adolescents .
- Young adults.
- People who plan to travel to countries known to have meningitis outbreaks, such as the countries in Africa south of the Saharan Desert.
- People without a spleen.
- People who have HIV.
Haemophilus Influenzae Type B Vaccine
Before a vaccine became available for it, Haemophilus influenzae type b was the leading cause of bacterial meningitis. Hib is much less common today due to vaccinations.
Doctors usually administer the Hib vaccine at 2, 4, and 6 months of age. They will administer it again between the ages of 12 and 15 months.
The dosing regimen depends on the brand of vaccine an infant receives.
Doctors will give this vaccine either alone or as part of a combination vaccine.
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How Can Meningococcal Disease Be Prevented
You can reduce risk for meningococcal disease by avoiding fluids from the nose or mouth, especially:
- Get vaccinated
- Avoid droplets from sneezing and coughing
- Avoid kissing
- Do not share eating utensils or drink from the same beverage container
- Do not smoke, but if you do smoke, do not share cigarettes or cannabis
- Wash hands well and often
There is some evidence that behaviors such as lack of sleep, poor nutrition and drinking alcohol may increase the risk of contracting this disease.
When To Get Medical Help
You should get medical advice as soon as possible if you’re concerned that you or your child could have meningitis.
Trust your instincts and do not wait until a rash develops.
Call 999 for an ambulance or go to your nearest A& E immediately if you think you or your child might be seriously ill.
Call NHS 111 or your GP surgery for advice if you’re not sure if it’s anything serious or you think you may have been exposed to someone with meningitis.
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Youre Better To Be Safe Than Sorry: Video
Mark and Lisa Gallaghers daughter Letitia died of meningococcal disease in 2012. Since then, theyve been working to raise awareness about the disease and the vaccines available that protect against it. Read more
In the space of 5 hours shed gone from a headache and fever, to nothing they could do.
- refusal to feed
- a rash consisting of reddish-purple pin-prick spots or bruises.
Meningococcal B Vaccine Bexsero
Bexsero is broadly protective against meningococcal group B disease. Bexsero can be used to protect babies, children, adolescents and adults. Infants younger than twelve months of age need three doses to be fully protected. Older children, adolescents, and adults need two doses to be protected.
From 1 July 2021, Bexsero vaccine will be provided free of charge to close contacts of meningococcal cases of any meningococcal group , or people who are at higher risk of contracting meningococcal B disease because they:
are pre- or post-splenectomy
are pre- or post-solid organ transplant
are post-bone marrow transplant
are pre- or post-immunosuppression that will be/is longer than 28 days.
For others wishing to be protected against meningococcal B disease, Bexsero is available through your family doctor. The cost is approximately $150 per dose.
Bexsero is different to the MeNZB vaccine used in New Zealand between 2004 and 2011. The MeNZB vaccine was designed to target a specific type of meningococcal group B bacterium that only caused disease here in New Zealand. MeNZB was not meant for long term use. The vaccine was withdrawn once the rate of disease was significantly reduced. However, the active component of the MeNZB vaccine has contributed to the successful development of Bexsero.
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Why Are Meningococcal Vaccines Recommended
Meningococcal disease is caused by a type of bacteria. It can lead to an infection of the bloodstream or meningitis, or both, and can be life-threatening if not quickly treated. The MenACWY vaccine is very effective at protecting against four strains of the bacteria, while the MenB vaccine protects against a fifth strain.
What Causes Meningitis
Viral meningitis is caused by viruses. Bacterial meningitis is caused by bacteria.
Meningitis can also be caused by other organisms and some medicines, but this is rare.
Most forms of meningitis are contagious. The germs that cause it can be passed from one person to another through coughing and sneezing and through close contact.
What Is Meningitis
Meningitis is inflammation of the lining around the brain and spinal cord. It is usually caused by an infection.
The infection occurs most often in children, teens, and young adults. Also at risk are older adults and people who have long-term health problems, such as a weakened immune system.
There are two main kinds of meningitis:
- Viral meningitis is fairly common. It usually doesn’t cause serious illness. In severe cases, it can cause prolonged fever and seizures.
- Bacterial meningitis isn’t as common, but it’s very serious. It needs to be treated right away to prevent brain damage and death.
Are Free Or Low
Yes, if you dont have insurance or your insurance does not cover the cost of the meningococcal vaccines, you may be able to find free or low-cost meningococcal shots.
- Talk to your doctor or clinic to see if they participate in the Minnesota Vaccines for Children Program. If the person in need of vaccination is 18 years old or younger, they may be eligible for no-cost vaccines. However, there may be an administration fee of up to $21.22 per shot.
- Talk to your city or county health department. They may be able to provide low-cost meningococcal shots.
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What Are Meningitis And Meningococcal Disease
Meningitis is an inflammation of the linings around the brain and spinal cord. Meningitis can be caused by viruses or bacteria. Often, the symptoms of viral meningitis and bacterial meningitis are the same. Diagnosis of both viral and bacterial meningitis is confirmed by a lumbar puncture .
Viral meningitis is serious but rarely fatal in persons with normal immune systems. Usually, symptoms last 7-10 days and the person recovers completely. Many different viruses can cause meningitis. About 90% of cases of viral meningitis are caused by members of a group of viruses known as enteroviruses, such as coxsackieviruses and echoviruses. Herpes viruses and the mumps virus can also cause viral meningitis. There is no vaccination or treatment for viral meningitis .
Bacterial meningitis is of greater concern than viral meningitis, because it is associated with a significant risk of brain damage and death. Meningococcal meningitis, one type of bacterial meningitis, is of particular concern because while uncommon, it does affect college-age students and the disease may progress rapidly if untreated.