Student dies from meningitis
SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. (WSVN) -- Miami-Dade Schools has confirmed a student at Coral Reef Senior High has died from meningitis.
Eighteen-year-old Christopher Valdes was taken to Jackson Memorial Hospital South Thursday night after feeling sick. Within an hour, doctors said he died from bacterial meningitis. "There is treatment for this infection, but when the person arrives at the emergency room with such an advance stage, unfortunately, doctors can’t do much," said Miami-Dade County Health Department Epidemiologist, Dr. Alvaro Mejia Echeverry.
Coral Reef Senior High School was put on lock down Friday morning after learning about the student's death. "I was really scared because the paper was giving symptoms, and if you have any, you need to get checked out," said a student.
Students were sent home from the school with a letter to inform parents of the meningitis-related death. The letter noted symptoms include headache, vomiting, stiff neck and fever.
Coral Reef Senior High School, Miami-Dade County Public Schools and the Health Department are all working together to figure out how, when and where he contracted the disease. "There wouldn’t be a way to trace back when this patient got the infection from," said Echeverry.
Valdes is one of 15 to 20 cases per year in Miami-Dade County. Officials are urging students and staff if they suffer from any of the symptoms to go to the doctor or the emergency room.
This case is not related to widespread cases of fungal meningitis received from tainted steroid treatments. Doctors said this case spreads like the flu.
School officials said the school will not be quarantined because it’s not necessary.
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