After Meningitis; As The World Celebrates World Meningitis Day
World Meningitis Day is an initiative of COMO – the worldwide Confederation of Meningitis Organisations, that is marked every 24th of April to create meningitis awareness, highlighting its causes, its symptoms, as well as its vaccines and treatment measures.
This year’s theme for World meningitis day is LIFE AFTER AFTER MENINGITIS which is aimed at creating awareness of what LIFE AFTER MENINGITIS for affected victims of meningitis feels like. It is also aimed at encouraging victims of the MENINGITIS from their period of treatment through recovery and after-effect of the disease.
Meningitis is a rare infection that affects delicate membranes of the skull and spinal cord called the meninges. It is a potentially deadly disease that is capable of killing its victim within 24 hours. Meningitis can be viral, fungal or bacterial origin but the most dangerous is bacterial meningitis. It is more susceptible to children under 5 years, teenagers and young adults 16-25 and older adults over 55 years.
Meningitis affects over 2.8 million persons each year globally. In Nigeria, between December 2016 and June 23, 2017, severe cases of the disease with a total of 1,166 people d**d were recorded. Children between the ages of 5 and 14years were mostly affected, accounting for 6,791 cases out of a total 14, 513 cases recorded in 24 states.
Zamfara was the most affected state in terms of casualties, followed by Sokoto and Katsina. Together, they accounted for about 89 percent of the cases.
In 2018, the casualties from the diseases were not as high as that of the previous year.
After the effect of meningitis can result in memory loss, paralysis, loss of hearing, loss of sight, epilepsy, organ damage, brain damage and these are life-threatening conditions. In some victims’ cases, the after-effect is death.
The key to meningitis prevention is vaccination, unfortunately, there is a shortage of vaccine for meningitis especially for strain C globally. Creating awareness and early detection of the disease in other to be able to control its effects is also a good preventive measure. It is advised that states set up an incident management system for meningitis in anticipation of cases.