California Man Declared Brain Dead after Contracting Bacterial Meningitis

California Man Declared Brain Dead after Contracting Bacterial MeningitisAs reported by the Associated Presson April 13th, 2013, a West Hollywood man, age 33, has been declared brain dead after contracting bacterial meningitis earlier in the week.  His illness has prompted warnings about the potentially deadly strain of meningitis to gay men who are sexually active.

The man began to feel ill on Monday, April 8th, 2013.  He went to the emergency room on Wednesday and was in a coma by Thursday.  On Friday officials warned gay men who are sexually active to be aware of the potentially deadly threat to their health after the case was detected in Los Angeles County.  In 2010, 22 New York City gay men were infected by a strain of meningitis.  Seven died.  Tests are being performed to determine whether this strain is similar to those meningococcal infections.

The illness cannot be spread through casual contact. It can be spread by kissing and sexual contact. Symptoms of bacterial meningitis usually appear three to seven days after being exposed.  Symptoms include the following:

  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Stiffness in the neck
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Confused, altered mental state
  • Sensitivity to light

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), bacterial meningitis is normally severe but contracting the illness is not always a death sentence.  There were approximately 4,100 cases in the U.S. between 2003 and 2007 with 500 deaths, according to the CDC.

West Hollywood Councilman, John Duran, is planning to appropriate $20,000 to purchase vaccines for anyone who could not otherwise afford them.  Gay advocacy groups are joining in partnership with the city, posting health notices in gyms in West Hollywood.

The Los Angeles medical malpractice attorneys at Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley represents individuals and family members of individuals who have been harmed bymedical errors such as misdiagnosing, administering the wrong medication, using unsanitary needles, etc.  If a medical professional has made a mistake in your case or in the case of a family member, our Los Angeles injury lawyers can help.  Please call 213-514-8332 or complete our online contact form for a free consultation.