2017-2018 Student Handbook

Page 37 of 107 Updated 1.25.17 vaccination . The student must have received the vaccine during the five-year period preceding the first class day and at least 10 days prior to the first day of classes. A tuberculosis screening questionnaire is on the health form for each student to complete and follow accordingly. If the student answers “yes” to any questions on the TB risk questionnaire, the student should have a TB test (to be completed within six months prior to the start of classes). Important Information about Bacterial Meningitis This information is being provided to all new college students in the state of Texas. Bacterial meningitis is a serious, potentially deadly disease that can progress extremely fast, so take utmost caution. It is an inflammation of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord. The bacteria that causes meningitis can also infect the blood. This disease strikes about 3,000 Americans each year, including 100-125 on college campuses, leading to 5-15 deaths among college students every year. There is treatment, but those who survive may develop severe health problems or disabilities. Symptoms of Bacterial Meningitis include: • High fever • Rash or purple patches on skin • Light sensitivity • Confusion and sleepiness • Lethargy • Severe headache • Vomiting • Stiff neck • Nausea • Seizures • There may be a rash of tiny, red-purple spots caused by bleeding under the skin. These can occur anywhere on the body. The more symptoms, the higher the risk, so when these symptoms appear seek immediate medical attention. Diagnosis Diagnosis is made by a medical provider and is usually based on a combination of clinical symptoms and laboratory results from spinal fluid and blood tests. Early diagnosis and treatment can greatly improve the likelihood of recovery. Disease Transmission The disease is transmitted through saliva exchange (such as by kissing, or by sharing drinking containers, utensils, cigarettes, toothbrushes, etc.) or direct contact with respiratory or throat secretions. Exposure to saliva by sharing cigarettes, water bottles, eating utensils, food, kissing, etc. increases the risk of getting bacterial meningitis. Living in close conditions (such as sharing a room/suite in a residence hall or group home) also increases risk. Possible Consequences of the Disease • Death (in 8 to 24 hours from perfectly well to dead) • Permanent brain damage • Kidney failure • Learning disability • Hearing loss, blindness • Limb damage (fingers, toes, arms, legs) that requires amputation • Gangrene