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Utah gay, bisexual men warned of local bacterial meningitis diagnosis

The Salt Lake County Health Department has issued a public health alert to gay and bisexual men in Salt Lake after the rapid death of a gay man who was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis.

Los Angeles and New York City have recently seen an increase in the number of bacterial meningitis cases being diagnosed within the gay community. A member of the gay community in Salt Lake County was recently diagnosed with bacterial meningitis.

The organism that causes bacterial meningitis is spread via throat or respiratory secretions; this commonly occurs during kissing, sharing utensils, and sharing non-injection drugs. Anyone with a pre-existing condition such as HIV or other autoimmune disease has an increased risk of infection.

Bacterial meningitis can be very serious if medical intervention is not provided early. If you have been exposed to someone with bacterial meningitis, the Salt Lake County Health Department recommends that you notify a medical provider. Symptoms of bacterial meningitis include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Altered Mental Status
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Rash, usually associated with flu like symptoms

For more information, please contact the Salt Lake County Health Department at 385-468-4222

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11 Comments

  1. SL County Health Dept warns gay, bi men of bacterial meningitis diagnosis. Seek treatment for flu-like symptoms.

  2. This bothers me greatly. This is how stigma happens. This issue is not about Gay people, it is the population that has compromised immune systems, period. Bacterial Meningitis can infect anyone with a weakened immune system, Gay or Straight. Am I missing something?

  3. why is this just a gay/bi men issue? I'm pretty sure the bacteria isn't just targeting gay and bi community… shame on YOU Salt Lake Co. Health Dept!

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