News Alert!!: Meningococcal disease scare prompts a health warning.

ZachNews- News Alert

West Hollywood, CA: The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and the City of West Hollywood is issued a public health warning was made after a West Hollywood, California man contracted the illness.

The West Hollywood, California man suffering from Meningococcal disease has not been identified by name, but authorities say he is a 33 year old male lawyer and that anyone that may had have had contacted with the victim have already been notified.

Officials from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health announced that the 33 year old West Hollywood, California man contracted the Meningococcal disease and was declared brain dead Friday afternoon at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in West Hollywood, California.

**** Information obtain from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website states the following about Meningococcal disease: ****

Meningococcal disease can refer to any illness that is caused by the type of bacteria called Neisseria Meningitidis, also known as Meningococcus [muh-ning-goh-KOK-us].

The illness most people are familiar with is Meningococcal meningitis, which people sometimes just call meningitis.

This usually means the lining of the brain and spinal cord have become infected with these bacteria. But these bacteria can also cause other severe illnesses, like bloodstream infections (bacteremia or septicemia).

Meningococcus bacteria are spread through the exchange of respiratory and throat secretions like spit (e.g., living in close quarters, kissing).

Although it can be very serious, Meningococcal disease can be treated with antibiotics that prevent severe illness and reduce the spread of infection from person to person.

Quick medical attention is extremely important if Meningococcal disease is suspected. Keeping up to date with recommended vaccines is the best defense against Meningococcal disease.

Maintaining healthy habits, like getting plenty of rest and not coming into close contact with people who are sick, can also help.

Symptoms of Meningococcal disease are usually sudden onset of fever, headache, and stiff neck. It can start with symptoms similar to influenza (flu), and will often also cause nausea, vomiting, increased sensitivity to light, rash, and confusion.

**** More information regarding Meningococcal disease is at the following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website address: ****

http://www.cdc.gov/meningococcal/

Community agencies such as the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center in Los Angeles, California are urging individuals to take precautions.

West Hollywood Council Member John Duran held a news conference on Friday warning of the potentially deadly health threat because the 33 year old West Hollywood, California man case was detected in Los Angeles County, California.

According to West Hollywood Council Member John Duran, the concern surrounding the Meningococcal disease escalated when local public health officials realized that the West Hollywood, California case could possibly be linked to a meningitis outbreak in New York.

“We’re very concerned that 2 weeks ago the White Party in Palm Springs gathered about 8,000 to 10,000 gay men in the city of Palm Springs including from New York. This particular resident was in attendance at the White Party. We don’t want to create panic in the community, but at the same time, we want to alert people that this exists and to be on the lookout for these particular symptoms and to see a physician if you exhibit any of these symptoms,” said West Hollywood Council Member John Duran.

The White Party Palm Springs celebration was held from Friday, March 29th, 2013 to Sunday, March 31st, 2013 in Palm Springs, California and is the largest gay dance music festival in the world with thousands of party goers from all over the globe come to the celebration to enjoy music, dancing, and performances at the various pool parties held during the celebration.

Stay tuned to ZachNews for news updates with more information regarding this news story.

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