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Student recovers from viral meningitis

LAWRENCEVILLE - A Georgia Perimeter College student attending classes on Georgia Gwinnett College's campus had a confirmed case of viral meningitis, officials announced this week.

The student, who started feeling poorly the evening of Nov. 30, last attended class on Nov. 28, said Jennifer Stephens, spokeswoman for Georgia Gwinnett College. A physician has since cleared the student to return to campus, she said.

Georgia Gwinnett College is housed on the campus of the Gwinnett University Center, which acted as a satellite campus for several schools including Perimeter. As Georgia Gwinnett grows, the other schools are phasing out the programs they offer on the campus.

Viral meningitis can be caused by any virus that gets into the spinal fluid, said Vernon Goins, the spokesman for the Gwinnett County Health Department. Although the illness can be serious, it is less fatal than bacterial meningitis, he said.

Although no other cases have been reported on the college campus, Stephens said students were notified Thursday about the importance of notifying officials if they become symptomatic.

"At this point, we are comfortable with the situation and will closely monitor all new information as it becomes available," Stephens said in a news release.

Symptoms include fever, severe headache, stiff neck, sensitivity to light, drowsiness or confusion, nausea and vomiting. Anyone who experiences these symptoms should seek medical care.