Meningitis survivor shares graphic rash photos to help others

A young woman who nearly died of meningitis has shared shocking photographs of her devastating rash online to help raise awareness of the condition.

Hairdresser Charlene Colechin, from near Chesterfield in Derbyshire, contracted the disease a month ago. Her symptoms began with a headache and vomiting and the following day a rash started to appear on her body.

Charlene was rushed to a local hospital and she is now still undergoing treatment, after being transferred to the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield.

Talking to the BBC Charlene said: "I was in a coma for nine days because all my organs were failing. I did die but obviously they brought me back."


She now faces surgery to remove her toes. On Tuesday, she posted photos of her rash on Facebook to raise awareness of how serious meningitis can be. She said: "These are not nice photos but this is the reality of what meningitis can do."

Rash caused by meningitis? The facts to know

A typical rash is common with meningitis. The rash is red or purple. Small spots develop at first and may occur in groups anywhere on the body. They often grow to become blotchy and look like little bruises. One or two may develop at first but many may then appear in different parts of the body.

The spots/blotches do not fade when pressed (unlike many other rashes).

To check for this do the glass test: Place a clear glass firmly on one of the spots or blotches. If the spot/blotch does not fade and you can still see it through the glass, get medical help immediately.

Read more about meningitis

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