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CDC alerts doctors to watch for rare, serious bacterial infection appearing with unusual symptoms

Health officials are alerting doctors to be on the lookout for certain types of rare, serious meningococcal infections that are on the rise in the United States.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a new health alert that these infections, which are caused by a certain strain of Neisseria meningitidis bacteria, may present with unusual symptoms. In the cases identified so far this year, about 1 in 6 people have died, a higher fatality rate than they typically see with meningococcal infections.

These cases are also unusual because they are striking middle-aged adults. Typically, meningitis infections strike babies or adolescents and young adults.

The CDC’s alert comes after the Virginia Department of Health warned about five deaths from the same rare, serious form of meningococcal disease in September.

Meningococcal disease refers to any sickness caused by Neisseria meningitidis. The infection can lead to both meningitis and a serious infection of the bloodstream called septicemia, or blood poisoning.

The bacteria can spread from person to person through the exchange of respiratory and throat secretions, and typically occurs via kissing, coughing, sneezing or living in close contact with others who are infected.

There are four different groups of meningococcal bacteria known to circulate in the United States — B, C, W and Y. The CDC says that in 2023, there were 422 cases of disease caused by these bacteria reported in the United States, the highest number reported since 2014. Most of them were caused by a particular strain, ST-1466, which is in the Y subgroup.

So far, 2024 is on track to top that number. To date, 143 cases have been reported in the United States — almost 80% more than had been reported at the same point in 2023.

The CDC says most people being diagnosed with this particular strain are adults ages 30 to 60. A disproportionate number of cases, 63%, are among Black people and 15% are in people who have HIV.

Typical symptoms of meningitis infections include fever, headache, a stiff neck, an aversion to light and nausea. Many of the recently reported cases don’t have these symptoms. About two-thirds of patients have bloodstream infections, about 4% have had painful, infected joints.

Symptoms of meningococcal bloodstream infections include fever and chills, fatigue, vomiting, cold hands and feet, rapid breathing, diarrhea and in later stages, a dark purple rash.

Initial symptoms can look like a lot of different infections, but they get worse quickly and may become life-threatening within hours, the CDC said. Immediate treatment with antibiotics is critical. Survivors may have long term effects such as deafness or amputations of the arms and legs.

There is a vaccine that protects against bacterial meningitis. It is recommended for children ages 11 to 12, and because protection wanes, a booster is usually given at age 16. It’s also recommended for people with certain medical conditions that compromise immune function, like HIV. The CDC says people in vulnerable groups should get boosters of this vaccine every 3 to 5 years.

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by Anonymousreply 24April 3, 2024 3:28 PM

Great, another fucking thing to worry about.

by Anonymousreply 1March 29, 2024 7:27 PM

I didn’t see raw anal sex as a way to transmit it, and I’m on PrEP and DoxyPEP, so I should still go to the orgies this weekend.

by Anonymousreply 2March 29, 2024 7:35 PM

The CDC says most people being diagnosed with this particular strain are adults ages 30 to 60. A disproportionate number of cases, 63%, are among Black people and 15% are in people who have HIV.

by Anonymousreply 3March 29, 2024 7:37 PM

[quote]The bacteria can spread from person to person through the exchange of respiratory and throat secretions, and typically occurs via kissing, coughing, sneezing or living in close contact with others who are infected.

Ass eating is fine, yes?

by Anonymousreply 4March 29, 2024 7:42 PM

R4 probably scat too, no?

by Anonymousreply 5March 29, 2024 7:50 PM

Is March 28, 2024 the new June 5, 1981?

by Anonymousreply 6March 29, 2024 7:56 PM

I’d be curious what the male female breakdown is for those infected. 1 in 6 are fatalities is really scary.

by Anonymousreply 7March 29, 2024 8:06 PM

It looks like according to cdc the infected are 65% male .

by Anonymousreply 8March 29, 2024 8:48 PM

[quote] adults ages 30 to 60. A disproportionate number of cases, 63%, are among Black people and 15% are in people who have HIV.

Migrant connections ?

by Anonymousreply 9March 29, 2024 9:09 PM

R9 probably meningitis is an easy vaccination. Between the vax psycho moms and migrants they’re going to kill us all.

by Anonymousreply 10March 29, 2024 9:19 PM


The very deadly meningitis outbreaks we have seen over the past years ,that pop up now and then which impact gay men have nothing to do with psycho moms or immigrants. More with syphilis and hiv and sex.

The fact is that 65% of those recently infected during this outbreak are males. Which may or may not mean something significant. Time and cdc will tell us on that.

by Anonymousreply 11March 30, 2024 9:29 AM

While the numbers of this new outbreak are nearly 2x what they were last year at this time watch for a bigger jump in Dx numbers now.

CDC is asking for a retroactive look at this not just greater scrutiny now with new patients.

by Anonymousreply 12March 30, 2024 11:33 AM

At least it is bacterial and not viral.

by Anonymousreply 13March 30, 2024 11:38 AM

“and may become life-threatening within hours”

The Initial symptoms sounds a lot like the flu. By the time additional symptoms appear it’s been more than a few hours.

The thing that I was taken with, with these previous outbreaks of meningitis that were impacting gay men, one in Chicago a few years ago,one in Canada before that , others in different places , was how quick these turned fatal. All pretty much gay men, many with history of syphilis and HIV, but not exclusively with these infections , but many

Men dead on the floor of their apt before they could get to the hospital.

It might be a good time to rent a few good movies or start Shogun instead of whatever you were planning to do.

by Anonymousreply 14March 30, 2024 12:09 PM


by Anonymousreply 15March 30, 2024 12:13 PM

[quote]The Initial symptoms sounds a lot like the flu. By the time additional symptoms appear it’s been more than a few hours.

Thirty years ago, an older female relative of mine went to her doctor one afternoon because she was feeling quite ill. He told her it was the flu and sent her home. She was rushed to the ER that night and was diagnosed with meningitis. She survived, but the drugs they gave her to treat it rendered her deaf and gave her severe vertigo -- she had to use a walker the rest of her life.

by Anonymousreply 16March 30, 2024 12:22 PM

I hope your relatives sued her doctor, R16.

by Anonymousreply 17March 30, 2024 9:17 PM


Yes a spinal tap for everyone that shows up at the ER with flu or Covid symptoms might have helped

It would certainly mean far shorter wait times in the ER.

by Anonymousreply 18March 31, 2024 5:58 PM


Those symptoms the deafness, the vertigo, are not uncommon with meningitis. It was likely the disease not the treatment that caused those is a guess. Lucky for her loss of limbs was not something she faced. And she certainly could have experienced those..

by Anonymousreply 19March 31, 2024 6:10 PM

[quote] CDC says bacterial infection cases are rising: What to know about meningococcal disease

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued an alert to health care providers about bacterial infections as a strain of the meningococcal disease begins to circulate within the United States.

Meningococcal disease is an illness caused by a bacteria called Neisseria meningitidis. While this illness can have severe symptoms, including death, a serious infection commonly called meningitis can form in the lining of the brain and spinal cord and bloodstream, according to the CDC.

In the alert, the CDC explained that a variant of the Neisseria meningitidis serogroup Y has reported 140 cases in 2024 so far. Although meningitis typically affects infants and young adults, this strand is targeting adults between the ages of 30 to 60 years old. People who are at a higher risk of getting this type of meningitis are Black and African Americans or someone who has HIV.

There are six types of meningitis serogroups that are known: A, B, C, W, X and Y. The four groups that are in the United States are B, C, W and Y, the CDC states.

Since 2014, the highest number of cases from type Y were reported in 2023 with 422 cases, according to the CDC.

In addition, the state of Virginia is currently dealing with a statewide outbreak from the meningococcal disease type Y. Since June 2022, "there have been 35 confirmed cases of meningococcal disease associated with this outbreak, including 6 deaths," according to the Virginia Department of Health.

This bacteria can kill young people: There's a new way to prevent it.

There are two types of infections that can stem from meningococcal disease. They are meningococcal meningitis and meningococcal septicemia (aka meningococcemia), which is a bloodstream infection, according to the CDC.

Here are symptoms to look out for in both infections:

Symptoms of meningitis:



Stiff neck.




Altered mental status.

Symptoms of meningococcal bloodstream infection:

Cold hands and feet.


Fever and chills.


Rapid breathing.

Severe aches and pains.


In advanced stages of the infection, a dark purple rash may appear.

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by Anonymousreply 20March 31, 2024 8:13 PM

Working as anther STD.

But as of Monday, 143 cases have been reported to the C.D.C. so far this year, 62 more than the number of cases reported last year during the same period.

Many recent cases were caused by an unusual strain of N. meningitidis called ST-1466. This strain caused 17 deaths among 94 patients whose outcomes are known, a fatality rate of 18 percent. Survivors of meningococcal disease may be left with long-term disability, deafness, amputations or brain damage.

A majority of people affected in the recent outbreaks were Black people and adults ages 30 to 60. Others who are susceptible to the infection include people living with H.I.V., who account for 15 percent of patients; individuals who have had their spleens removed; people with sickle cell disease; and patients with certain rare immune conditions.

A meningitis vaccine that protects against four of six N. meningitidis types — including group Y, which includes ST-1466 — is recommended for adolescents as well as those with medical conditions like H.I.V. Most older adults have not received the vaccine.

In Virginia, which has had 35 cases of meningococcal disease and six deaths since the summer of 2022, public health officials have not found an epidemiologic link that explains the outbreak, said Dr. Laurie Forlano, the state’s epidemiologist.

“We always try to find that golden ticket of common risk factors,” Dr. Forlano said. “Were they all at one party together, or at one family event? Were they all at a certain facility? Are there social networks they share? That’s just not the case here.”

The illness is not spread through casual contact, but through activities that involve exposure to saliva or respiratory or throat secretions — kissing, for example, or sharing food and drinks or cigarettes. A Ticking Clock: Treatment must happen quickly.

The infection can cause meningitis, an inflammation of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord. Typical symptoms include fever, headaches, stiff neck, vomiting, light sensitivity and altered mental status.

The bacteria can also invade the bloodstream, a complication called sepsis, which appears to be the more common consequence with the current serogroup Y cases. Symptoms include fever and chills, fatigue, vomiting, cold hands and feet, severe aches and pains, diarrhea, rapid breathing and, in later stages, a dark purple rash.

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by Anonymousreply 21March 31, 2024 8:54 PM

They say the target audience for this infection is 30-60 year olds. But one source claims that represents 65% of the cases. If so 35% falls outside 30-60.

63% are black. Conversely 37% are not black.

15% have HIV so most infected don’t have hiv.

A higher fatality rate than normal. Very quick acting symptoms as far as people going from OK to dead.. Fatal within hours was one quote .

20% of those that do survive end up deaf, losing arms and legs, brain damage, etc.

by Anonymousreply 22April 3, 2024 2:50 PM

These little whores better not get me sick!

by Anonymousreply 23April 3, 2024 3:23 PM

I lost a a dear friend and lover in the 80’s to this. He passed really quickly 3days from diagnosis. Please be mindful, be safe.

by Anonymousreply 24April 3, 2024 3:28 PM
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