Meningitis is the inflammation of the tissues surrounding the brain and spinal cord. Early symptoms are often confused with the flu, and include fever, chills, vomiting or nausea with headache, and skin rash. It can be spread through coughing, sneezing, sharing a drinking cup, and kissing. There are approved vaccines available for several different types of meningitis.
Anyone can get meningitis, but it is more common in people whose bodies have trouble fighting infections. Meningitis can progress rapidly. You should seek medical care quickly if you have
- A sudden fever
- A severe headache
- A stiff neck