NOTE: A surveillance case definition is a set of uniform criteria used to define a disease for public health surveillance. Surveillance case definitions enable public health officials to classify and count cases consistently across reporting jurisdictions. Surveillance case definitions are not intended to be used by healthcare providers for making a clinical diagnosis or determining how to meet an individual patient’s health needs.
Meningococcal disease presents most commonly as meningitis and/or meningococcemia that may progress rapidly to purpura fulminans, shock, and death. However, other manifestations may be observed.
Isolation of Neisseria meningitidis from a normally sterile site
A positive antigen test in cerebrospinal fluid or clinical purpura fulminans in the absence of a positive blood culture
A clinically compatible case that is culture confirmed
Antigen test results in urine or serum are unreliable for diagnosing meningococcal disease.