It was announced this morning by CBC News that an 18-year old Montreal woman has died from a bacterial meningitis infection. The woman has not been identified, according to the CBC, but Montreal's public health agency says it is monitoring individuals who were in frequent contact with her to prevent any potential spread of the infection.

Bacterial meningitis can be contracted through contact with fluids ejected from the mouth. This means that anyone the woman had coughed near or on may be at risk.

Montreal's public health agency is concerned for public safety, as even people who had lived with the woman may have contracted the infection.

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TL;DR Montreal's public health agency is concerned for public safety after a woman died of bacterial meningitis. The infection can be contagious and transfers through "throat and respiratory secretions," according to the CBC. More details below.

According to a doctor with the public health agency, it isn't clear how the young woman contracted bacterial meningitis. The infection targets areas of the body near the brain and along the spinal cord.

Meningitis is transmitted through activities like kissing, sneezing, coughing, says the CBC.

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According to the government of Quebec, symptoms of bacterial meningitis include:

  • High fever
  • Severe headache
  • Nauseau and vomiting
  • Red marks or tiny pin-size hemorrages or brusing on the skin
  • General feeling of illness

The Government of Quebec website further states that meningitis can lead to permanent brain damage, amputations of hands and/or feet, and, in extreme cases, death.

Montreal's public health agency is asking residents to always ensure they are up-to-date on their vaccinations.

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Anyone who is concerned they are contagious or are showing symptoms of bacterial meningitis should call Info Santé at 811 immediately.

You can find more information on bacterial meningitis on the Quebec government website.

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