Cases of invasive meningococcal disease spike in Manitoba, with 1 death – CBC

Province has had 19 cases since December. Typically, there are 6 a year

Jun 18, 2024

Manitoba is seeing an increase in a rare and potentially fatal bacterial infection, with one death already attributed to it.

Since December there have been 19 reported cases of invasive meningococcal disease, in both adults and children, Manitoba Health says.

Typically, about six cases are reported annually.

Of the 19 cases, all but one are are the W strain (or serogroup), which causes meningitis that can lead to severe brain and spinal cord inflammation.

“It’s quite a serious condition and it’s a fairly rapid onset,” said Dr. Carol Kurbis, a provincial medical officer of health in communicable disease control.

Eight of the 19 cases cases were identified within a month-long period, starting in December and ending in January, but the reason for the surge is still a mystery, Kurbis said.

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