CDC investigates ‘one of the worst meningococcal disease outbreaks’ in U.S. history among gay and bisexual men in Florida.
The CDC said on Thursday that there were 26 cases and 7 deaths from meningococcal disease in Florida during the investigation period. Of these, 24 were men who had sex with men, and 6 died.
The CDC says the epidemic “is primarily affecting gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men, including those with HIV.” Recent data show that about half of the cases associated with this outbreak are Hispanic men. The outbreak mainly affects people living in Florida, but it has also affected some people who have traveled to Florida. »
Meningococcal diseases include meningitis (infection of the lining of the brain and spinal cord) and blood infections. “Mingococcal disease affects anyone and can be fatal,” the CDC said in a statement.
Bacteria spread by sharing respiratory or throat secretions such as saliva or saliva. Spreading bacteria usually requires close or prolonged contact, such as being close to someone who is kissing or coughing.
Symptoms include high fever, headache, stiff neck, nausea or vomiting, and a dark purple rash, the CDC said. It may look like the flu at first, but it usually gets worse very quickly. People with these symptoms should see a doctor right away.
The CDC recommends that gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men get the meningococcal vaccine if they live in Florida and talk to their health care provider if they travel to Florida. For people living with HIV, health officials emphasize the importance of routine immunizations.
“Getting vaccinated against meningococcal disease is the best way to prevent this serious disease,” said Dr José R. Romero, director of the National Center for Vaccines and Respiratory Diseases, in a CDC press release. It can be fatal quickly,” he said. “Due to the Florida outbreak and the number of pride events held across the state in the coming weeks, it is important that gay and bisexual men living in Florida get vaccinated, and that people traveling to Florida talk to their healthcare provider about vaccinations. MenACWY vaccine. »
The CDC says vaccines are provided at doctors’ offices, pharmacies, local health centers or local health departments, and that insurance should cover the costs of those for whom the vaccine is recommended during an epidemic. Anyone living in Florida can get the vaccine free of charge from the county health department during the outbreak.
According to the CDC, infectious diseases that affect men who have sex with men are caused by serogroup C. There is also an unrelated serogroup B group among college students in one county.
Although the threat to the general U.S. population is low, according to the CDC, there are particularly high numbers of monkeypox infections among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men. “However, people who have been in close contact with people with monkey pox are at risk,” the CDC said.
Description: On Thursday, the CDC updated and corrected the total number of meningococcal disease cases and deaths in Florida, including the number of men who had sex with men.