Meningococcal infection often occurs in the form of meningococcal meningitis (inflammation of the meninges). This is a human infectious disease caused by bacteria – meningococci. The source of this infectious agent is a sick person or a bacteriocarrier.
Meningococcal infection, causes, symptoms, first aid for meningococcal infection, measures at the source of infection.
Meningococci are excreted with droplets of mucus from the upper respiratory tract during coughing, talking and into the air, and then into the body of a healthy person through the respiratory tract. The peak incidence occurs in February – April (i.e., the coldest time of the year). More often, meningococcal infection affects children because they have relatively weak immunity compared to adults..
(cap) not due to weather is not a guarantee against infection, although hypothermia (in particular, of the head) is one of the most important predisposing factors for the development of meningococcal infection. Meningococcal infection can proceed as nasopharyngitis (inflammatory lesions of the organs of the nasopharynx), purulent inflammation of the soft membrane of the brain (as purulent meningitis). Or inflammation of the very substance of the brain, combined with inflammation of its shell – meningoencephalitis.
It is also possible the septic course of the disease (meningococcemia), provided the pathogen enters the bloodstream. In this case, the formation of secondary foci of infectious inflammation in the body is likely. In some cases, one patient may develop several forms of the disease at once..
Often there is asymptomatic meningococcal congestion, due to which mainly the circulation of the pathogen in a particular team is maintained. The greatest danger is a patient who has signs of an inflammatory phenomenon in the nasopharynx – nasopharyngitis. therefore, coughing and sneezing are noted. It most actively spreads the pathogen in the team, and the external signs of the disease resemble a common cold against the background of a common acute respiratory disease.
Symptoms of Meningococcal Infection.
The most important symptoms of nasopharyngeal meningococcal infection are sore throat, sore throat, nasal congestion, dry cough, runny nose with scanty discharge of a purulent mucous character (less often – bloody), headaches and an increase in the general temperature of the body. Symptoms such as nosebleeds and dizziness are not ruled out..
Meningococcal meningitis is also characterized by a sudden onset and development of a characteristic clinical picture in the first 1-3 days. At the beginning of the disease, the patient’s condition worsens sharply, body temperature rises to 38–40 degrees, repeated vomiting begins, which is not associated with eating and does not bring relief to the patient. Children who can clearly articulate their complaints complain of intense headache.
Little children just scream in pain and become restless. Anxiety is often replaced by feelings of stupor and confusion. In addition, patients suffering from meningitis do not tolerate external stimuli (sound, noise, light, touch). In a particularly severe form of pathology, the patient assumes a characteristic posture – lying on his side, with his legs raised to his stomach and his head thrown back. The skin is characterized by pallor, bluish lips. The patient suffers from a lack of appetite, but drinks a lot and often.
Meningococcal infection is usually characterized by an acute onset. The patient begins a fever, on the 1st – 2nd days of the disease, a skin rash develops, which is an asterisk of irregular shape and of various sizes. Small-scale or extensive hemorrhages on the body are less likely to form, which accompanies the most severe course of the disease with a violation of the cardiovascular system, bleeding and hemorrhage in the internal organs. Meningococcal infection may be accompanied by seizures.
First aid for meningococcal infection.
A patient with a suspicion of a particular course of meningococcal infection should be immediately isolated and hospitalized, treatment should be carried out in a hospital. The therapy of meningitis is in direct proportion to the events started as early as possible. During convulsions, the patient, especially his head, is held to prevent injuries. Before the doctor arrives, you can give painkillers for severe headaches (1 capsule of tramadol, 1-2 tablets of metamizole sodium). At high temperature, you need to apply cold to the head.
Emergency measures at the prehospital stage are aimed at preventing the development of infectious toxic shock. In this connection, it is necessary to intramuscularly administer a lytic mixture (taking into account previously taken drugs) – solutions of sodium metamizole, antispasmodics (drotaverine hydrochloride, papaverine hydrochloride, etc.) and promethazine. An antiemetic agent is administered intravenously or intramuscularly (1-2 ml of metoclopramide solution).
With convulsions or increased excitement, the patient is given a sedative (2-4 ml of diazepam solution intramuscularly, intravenously). In order to reduce the body’s immune response and maintain the necessary level of blood pressure, glucocorticosteroid drugs are injected (30-60 mg of prednisone). With the development of infectious toxic shock, infusion therapy is carried out. For example, reopoliglyukin is administered intravenously.
If, against the background of glucocorticoid use, blood pressure remains low, a dopamine solution is administered intravenously (slowly). In the presence of appropriate indications, a breathing tube is inserted into the trachea and mechanical ventilation is performed. Antibacterial drugs (penicillin) are urgently prescribed. Patients to be treated in a hospital for infectious patients.
After hospitalization, the patient is given a lumbar puncture for sampling cerebrospinal fluid for analysis, which is of great diagnostic value. In addition, after a puncture, intracranial pressure decreases and a headache disappears, the intensity of manifestation and other symptoms decreases. With timely initiation of therapy, improvement of the condition occurs on 3-4 days and subsequently comes complete recovery. Meningococcal infection is most successfully treated with modern antibiotics, blood products and blood substitutes..
Activities in the focus of meningococcal infection.
Prevention of the spread of meningococcal infection consists in isolation from the collective of the alleged patient or bacterium carrier. Also, after its identification, wet cleaning is carried out with disinfectants, ventilation. When communicating with a sick person, wear protective masks. For those who were in contact with a sick meningococcal infection, observation is established for up to 10 days. This is the maximum incubation period..
On each case of suspected meningococcal infection, health workers must report to the state sanitary and epidemiological surveillance authorities at the place of registration of the disease within 2 hours.
Based on the book “Quick help in emergency situations”.