A MAN has died in a Hunter hospital from meningococcal disease.
“This is the first death and the second case of meningococcal disease from the Hunter New England region this year,” public health physician, Dr Craig Dalton, said.
“We offer our sincere condolences to the man’s family.
“Close contacts of the man have been prescribed clearance antibiotics. There are no links between this case and any previous cases.”
In most cases, early detection and treatment results in a complete recovery.
Dr Dalton urged the community to be on the alert for symptoms of meningococcal disease.
“If anyone suspects meningococcal disease, they should seek medical attention immediately,” he said.
“Symptoms may include high fever, headache, neck stiffness, dislike of bright lights, nausea and vomiting, a rash of reddish-purple spots or bruises, and drowsiness.
“It may also present as pain in the legs, cold hands and feet, or abnormal skin colour.”
Babies with the infection can be irritable, not feed properly and have an abnormal cry, he said.
“Meningococcal disease is caused by a bacterial infection which is not easily spread from person to person and generally, doesn’t survive well outside the human body,” he said.
“Close and prolonged contact is needed to pass it on.”
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