Young woman dies of meningococcal disease in Limerick

Department of Public Health launches investigation and warns public to be aware of symptoms of fatal infection

The Department of Public Health Mid-West has launched an investigation after a young woman in Limerick died of meningococcal disease, and warned the public to be vigilant for symptoms of the disease.

The victim, who was not identified but who it is understood was aged under 30, died recently, after the department was made aware of the case in late September.

A department spokesman said that it was “investigating a single case of confirmed meningococcal disease in Limerick, and we offer our condolences to the family and friends of the deceased”.

“Close contacts identified by Public Health Mid-West have been contacted and offered treatment in accordance with national guidance,” added the spokesman.

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The department said that person-to-person spread of meningococcal disease was “very unusual, especially with others who are not a household or physically close personal contact”.

Meningococcal disease is best known as a cause of meningitis, and can also result in septicaemia or blood poisoning.

Signs and symptoms may include: severe headaches; fever; vomiting; drowsiness; discomfort from bright light; neck stiffness and rash. Anyone with concerns should seek medical help immediately.