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Quebec's $100-million campaign targets meningococcal disease

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For more information about the Organization of Teratology Information Specialists For more information about the Organization of Teratology Information Specialists or to find a service in your area, call (866) 626-6847 or visit us online at: Meningococcal Disease (Bacterial meningitis) Vaccine and Pregnancy This sheet talks about the risks that exposure to the meningococcal vaccine can have during pregnancy. With each pregnancy, all women have a 3% to 5% chance of having a baby with a birth defect. This information should not take the place of medical care and advice from your health care provider. What is meningitis? Meningitis is an infection of the lining that surrounds the brain and spinal cord. Meningitis can have multiple causes, including viruses and bacteria. One type of bacteria that causes meningitis is the meningococcus bacteria. Meningococcal disease is a very serious condition. Even with appropriate antibiotic treatment, meningococcal disease can cause death or result in life-long disability. Fortunately, meningococcal disease is not common and preventative vaccines are available. Is bacterial meningitis contagious? Yes. While bacterial meningitis is not as contagious as a cold or the flu, it can still be passed on through contact with a sick person’s throat or mouth secretions. For example, it can be passed from person to person through coughing or kissing. Individuals living close together, like students in a college dorm, are at increased risk for getting bacterial meningitis. What is the meningococcal vaccine? The meninogococcal vaccine provides protection against the common types of bacterial meningitis. These vaccines are known as MCV4 meningococcal conjugate vaccine (brand names: Menveo ® and Menactra ® ) and MPSV4 meningococcal polysaccharide vaccine (brand name: Menomune ® ). The MCV4 vaccines

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