Camden woman recovering from meningococcal disease

Posted: March 07, 2014

CAMDEN A 57-year-old Camden woman has tested positive for meningococcal disease and is recovering at home after being hospitalized, Camden County officials said.

The victim, whom officials did not identify Wednesday, began undergoing treatment Feb. 28 at Kennedy University Hospital-Cherry Hill for an unknown illness.

The patient's serology blood test showed she had meningococcemia, a disease caused by the bacterium Neisseria meningitidis, officials said.

The Camden County Health Department and New Jersey Department of Health and Human Services were notified Monday, and others in the woman's household were found to be free of the disease.

"Meningococcal disease is not spread by casual contact or handling items that the person has touched," said Camden County Freeholder Carmen G. Rodriguez, liaison to the county Department of Health and Human Services.

"The individual's family members and others she has come in close contact with have been notified and have been seen by a doctor," Rodriguez said.

Meningococcal invasive disease is a severe infection of the blood or the meninges, the covering of the brain and spinal cord, officials said.

When the infection is in the blood, it's called meningococcemia, and when it's in the meninges, it's called meningococcal meningitis.

Both conditions must be immediately reported to authorities.

The Camden County Health Department is watching for other cases, though officials say no further action is required at this time.

No cases of meningococcal disease had been reported in the county in the last couple of years, officials said.

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