Bacterial meningitis is aggressive, develops quickly and can lead to permanent disability or death in a matter of hours if no medical attention is sought.

It is fatal in approximately 50% of meningitis cases and accounts for around 170,000 deaths around the world each year.

Most cases of bacterial meningitis are caused by:

  • Meningococcus/meningococcal
  • Pneumococcus/pneumococcal
  • Haemophilus Infuenzae Type B/Hib
  • Tuberculosis/TB
  • Group B Streptococcus
  • E.coli Meningitis

What are the Signs and Symptoms of bacterial meningitis?

The symptoms are usually flu-like with a runny nose, irritable, hates bright lights, fever, and maybe seizures. Visit our signs and symptoms page for the full list.

Please do NOT wait for a rash to appear before seeking medical attention!

What is the treatment for bacterial meningitis?

Bacterial meningitis is life threatening and needs urgent medical attention. To diagnose properly what strain or type of bacterial meningitis, the patient requires an invasive procedure called a lumbar puncture which is a needle inserted into the base of the spine to test the spinal fluid for the bacteria. Once or if the strain is determined, the patient is then given antibiotics to aid their recovery. 

How and why do you get meningitis?

Bacterial meningitis can affect anyone, anywhere and at any time. It is not seasonal, age or cultural bias. Infants in particular are more prone to contracting bacterial meningitis because their immune system is so immature.

Teenagers and young adults are known to be the biggest carriers of the disease because they socialise in close knit groups, attend festivals and mosh pits, parties, have late nights and share, food, cigarettes, drinks and engage in intimate kissing where transmission of the bacteria is more likely.

More information

If you would like more information on this you can download our brochures and pamphlets, call us Monday-Friday on 1800 250 223 or email us at info@meningitis.org.au