UK student being treated for possible meningitis case

News Staff

A UK student is being treated for a possible case of meningococcal disease, also called cerebrospinal meningitis, according to an email sent by the university Monday night.

The disease is highly communicable, transmitted through close contact. The virus spreads through respiratory droplets and oral secretions such as saliva.

According to the email from the university, those with a risk for infection, which did not include students who lived in the same residence hall or attended the same classes as the patient, were notified and given medication to prevent transmission of the disease.

Meningococcal disease is treated with aggressive antibiotics given intravenously, but it has a high rate of mortality and permanent disability if it is not treated immediately.

According to an online clinical resource, UpToDate, college students in dormitories and military recruits are more at risk for the disease because of prolonged close contact with each other. 

Students are usually vaccinated at 11 to 12 years old and 16 to 18 years old, before they come to college.