Invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) is a serious disease caused by bacteria called Neisseria meningitidis which causes meningitis and meningococcemia. Meningitis is a swelling of the lining of the brain and spinal cord. Meningococcemia is a blood infection.
IMD can be transmitted from person to person through droplets of saliva in drinks or saliva droplets that are airborne from coughing or sneezing, and by kissing. The bacteria can also be spread by touching surfaces that have been touched by an infected person.
Symptoms of invasive meningococcal disease include fever, severe headache, stiff neck, nausea, vomiting, and occasionally a rash. Babies infected with IMD may have a high fever, are difficult to wake, cry more than normal, lose their appetite, are irritable, and develop a rash. IMD is a serious illness; approximately five to fifteen percent of people infected die.
Menomune vaccine is used to prevent infection by meingococcal bacteria. The vaccine contains the four most common types of the meningococcal bacteria. The bacterium in the vaccine causes the body’s immune system to develop antibodies to the disease. The Menomune vaccine will not treat an active case of IMD.
Menomune vaccine is administered to adults and children who are least three months of age and may not provide protection for all individuals.
If you are planning to travel outside Canada and wondering if you need to get vaccinated based on your destination country, feel free to call us at (905) 475-2353 or book your appointment online for consultation with our healthcare provider.