Skip to content

Brain & Nervous System Health Center

Font Size

Neisseria Meningitidis - Topic Overview

Meningitis caused by Neisseria meningitidis is sometimes referred to as meningococcal disease.

Some people have Neisseria meningitidis in their throats without getting sick. But they can pass it to another person, who may get sick.

Recommended Related to Brain & Nervous System

Sandhoff Disease

Important It is possible that the main title of the report Sandhoff Disease is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.

Read the Sandhoff Disease article > >

Neisseria meningitidis causes meningitis in about 25 out of 100 people who get the illness every year in the United States.1

Neisseria meningitidis also can cause outbreaks of meningitis. Outbreaks are most common outside the U.S.

If you are planning foreign travel, particularly to sub-Saharan Africa, talk with a doctor about getting the Neisseria meningitidisvaccine. Small outbreaks occur every year in the U.S.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that all children, starting at age 11 or 12, get 2 doses of meningococcal conjugate vaccine. But children who are at high risk for severe problems from meningitis also need 2 or more doses starting as early as 6 weeks of age. The vaccine protects against certain strains of Neisseria meningitidis. For more information, see the topic Immunizations.

People who have contact with someone with a Neisseria meningitidis infection may need to take a course of antibiotics to prevent the infection from spreading.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: March 11, 2013
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
    1
    Next Article:

    Today on WebMD

    nerve damage
    Learn how this disease affects the nervous system.
    senior woman with lost expression
    Know the early warning signs.
     
    woman in art gallery
    Tips to stay smart, sharp, and focused.
    medical marijuana plant
    What is it used for?
     
    senior man
    Article
    boy hits soccer ball with head
    Slideshow
     
    Graphic of active brain
    Article
    Vaccine and needle
    VIDEO
     
    brain illustration stroke
    Slideshow
    human brain
    Article
     
    most common stroke symptoms
    Article
    Graphic of number filled head and dna double helix
    Quiz