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Sutherland student treated for possible meningitis - The Pitt News

Sutherland student treated for possible meningitis

A Pitt student-athlete living in Sutherland Hall is currently being treated for a potential case of bacterial meningitis. (TPN File Photo)

A Pitt student-athlete living in Sutherland Hall is currently being treated for a potential case of bacterial meningitis, according to a statement released by the University Wednesday morning.

The statement said the student was tested for the illness Tuesday, meaning the infection cannot be confirmed until Friday. Those known to have had direct contact with the student are being given preventative antibiotics.

Pitt spokesperson Kevin Zwick said in an email that the student is a member of the track team.

“The University has already communicated directly with all students living in residence halls to provide resources and information,” the statement said.

According to Pitt’s statement, other athletes and students living on the floor in Sutherland will also receive a single-dose antibiotic.

Meningitis is an infection of the membranes around a person’s spinal cord and brain. It is not transmitted through the air or by causal touching but can be transmitted through bodily fluids such as saliva or perspiration.

Marian Vanek, executive director of the wellness center, described symptoms of meningitis in a letter sent via email to the Pitt student body Wednesday.

“Meningitis symptoms include sudden onset of fever, headache and stiff neck. Other symptoms may include nausea, vomiting and altered mental status (confusion),” the email said.

Vanek said any student experiencing these symptoms should report to the Student Health Service or hospital emergency department immediately. She said anyone with questions should call the Student Health Service at (412) 383-1800.

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John Hamilton :Managing Editor