Coed, independent, PK3-12th grade school in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Clinic byte: Meningitis vaccine

by Marie Confident, School Nurse
It seems like yesterday that my older daughter started first grade at Shorecrest, and soon she will be going to college. The prospect of college is exciting and scary for both students and parents, but one less worry for parents is to make sure that their college bound students are protected from meningitis. Meningitis is an infection of the brain and spinal cord that has the potential of being deadly in a very short period of time. It is caused by the bacteria Neisseria meningitidis.

Symptoms of meningitis may include sudden onset of high fever, headache, or stiff neck. There may be nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, fatigue, confusion or dark purple rash. It is transmitted mostly by sharing respiratory or throat secretions thru close lengthy contact with an infected person. Healthy people may carry the bacteria in their nose and throat thus can spread them to others who may become ill.

Early diagnosis and treatment with antibiotic are extremely important to prevent complications. Prevention is better than a cure. Taking the vaccine is prevention. It is recommended for 11-12 years old and a booster is to be given at 16 years old. If your child is past the recommended age, talk to your teen’s doctor about serogroup B meningococcal vaccination.

Other required vaccinations for college students include MMR, chicken pox, Hepatitis B and Tdap. For those of you with college bound students like me, please make it a priority.

Until next time, remain healthy!

Marie Confident, RN, BSN
Shorecrest School Nurse
mconfident@shorecrest.org

Shorecrest Preparatory School

5101 First Street Northeast
St Petersburg, FL 33703
Phone: (727) 522-2111  |  Fax: (727) 527-4191
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Shorecrest Preparatory School is a private, non-sectarian, coeducational, college preparatory day school for students preschool through high school, located in St. Petersburg, Florida.