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College Student In Connecticut Diagnosed With Meningitis

Central Connecticut State University.
Central Connecticut State University. Photo Credit: File

A college student in Connecticut has been diagnosed with bacterial meningitis, the university announced on Monday.

Late on Sunday, Dec. 2, Central Connecticut State University announced that a student had fallen ill, and was receiving treatment for a suspected case of bacterial meningitis, school officials said. That diagnosis was confirmed by the Connecticut Department of Public Health on Monday.

“We are working with CCSU officials and local health departments to investigate what thus far is a single case of meningitis in a CCSU student and to ensure that people who have come into close contact with the patient receive antibiotics as a precautionary measure,” the Department of Health announced. “Our State Laboratory today confirmed that the student was infected with meningococcal meningitis, serogroup B.”

According to the Department of Health, this type of bacterial meningitis is not easily transmittable from person to person – it requires close contact over a period of time.  

Simply being on the same college campus or being in the same classroom as an infected individual does not increase the chances of becoming infected. 

Those who have come into close contact with this student either have been or will be contacted by CCSU or local health officials for appropriate follow up, officials noted.

“With vaccines now available to prevent meningococcal meningitis, this disease is now rare in the United States,” officials posted in the wake of the meningitis outbreak. “The last case of this disease involving a college-aged student in Connecticut occurred in 2016. 

“The meningococcal vaccine that many college students have received provides protection against four of the five types of bacteria that cause meningococcal disease (serogroups A, C, W, and Y). 

A relatively new meningococcal vaccine that provides protection against the fifth type of the bacteria, serogroup B, the strain involved in this particular case, is now available and may have been received by some college students.  This particular vaccine is recommended, but it is not yet required for college students.”

The most common symptoms of meningitis, according to the Department of Health, include:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Stiff neck

There are often additional symptoms, such as

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Photophobia (eyes being more sensitive to light)
  • Altered mental status (confusion)

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