meningitis

What is Meningitis?


The complications of meningitis can be severe. The longer you or your child has the disease without treatment, the greater the risk of seizures and of permanent neurological damage, including hearing loss, blindness, loss of speech, learning disabilities, behavior problems and brain damage, even paralysis.

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com
Also known as arachnoiditis, meningococcal disease, Meningitides, Pachymeningitis, Pachymeningitides
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Meningitis information from trusted sources:

Meningitis - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Meningitis is inflammation of the protective membranes covering the brain and spinal cord, known collectively as the meninges. The inflammation may be ...

Read more on en.wikipedia.org

Meningitis: eMedicine Infectious Diseases

Jun 9, 2010 ... Overview: Meningitis is a clinical syndrome characterized by inflammation of the meninges. Clinically, this medical condition manifests with ...

Read more on emedicine.medscape.com

Meningitis Overview - Meningitis - Neurology Channel

Aug 6, 2010 ... Meningitis (or spinal meningitis) is an infection in the meninges and cerebrospinal fluid.

Encephalitis and Meningitis Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, Vaccine ...

Nov 29, 2010 ... Get information on encephalitis and meningitis treatment, vaccine, symptoms ( nausea, fever), types (bacterial, viral), causes, and learn how ...

Read more on www.medicinenet.com

Meningitis - staphylococcal: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia

Staphylococcal meningitis is caused by Staphylococcus bacteria. When it is caused by Staphylococcus aureus or Staphylococcus epidermidis bacteria, ...

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov

AllRefer Health - Meningitis

Meningitis information center covers Definition, Disorders, Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors, Symptoms & Signs, Diagnosis & Tests, ...

Read more on health.allrefer.com

CDC - Meningitis: Questions and Answers

Feb 23, 2010 ... A: Meningitis is an inflammation of the membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord. People sometimes refer to it as spinal meningitis. ...

Read more on www.cdc.gov

Hardin MD : Meningitis

Nov 22, 2010 ... [ Meningitis Pictures | Meningitis Symptoms | Free Articles (PubMed)] ... MEDLINEplus Health Encyclopedia : Meningitis : Symptoms ...

Read more on www.lib.uiowa.edu

What Is Meningitis?

Meningitis is an inflammation of the meninges, the lining that protects the brain and spinal cord. It is almost always caused by an infection, ...

Read more on www.ehealthmd.com

Meningitis

Meningitis is an inflammation of the membranes (meninges) and cerebrospinal fluid surrounding your brain and spinal cord, usually due to the spread of an infection. The swelling associated with meningitis often triggers the "hallmark" symptoms of this condition, including headache, fever and a stiff neck.

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com

Contents

Causes
There used to be a large number of different types of bacteria that could cause meningitis, but thanks to vaccination programmes, this number has been reduced.

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Diagnosis
Meningitis is difficult to diagnose. It comes on quite suddenly and can be easily confused with the flu because many of the symptoms are the same.

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Exams and Tests
Blood culture; Chest x-ray; Head CT scan; Gram-stain and culture of CSF (cerebral spinal fluid); Lumbar puncture ("spinal tap") with CSF glucose measurement and CSF cell count

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov
Medical advice
If you feel that you or your child has symptoms of meningitis, get emergency medical help immediately. Early treatment is key to a good outcome.

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov
Outlook (Prognosis)
Early diagnosis and treatment of bacterial meningitis is essential to prevent permanent neurological damage. Viral meningitis is usually not serious, and symptoms should disappear within 2 weeks with no lasting complications.

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov
Possible Complications
Brain damage; Hearing loss or deafness; Hydrocephalus; Loss of vision

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Preparing for your appointment
In some cases when you call to set up an appointment with your doctor, you may be told to go to the emergency room or call 911.

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com
Prevention
The meningococcal vaccination is recommended for:Haemophilus vaccine (HiB vaccine) in children will help prevent one type of meningitis.; The pneumococcal conjugate vaccine is now a routine childhood immunization and is very effective at preventing pneumococcal meningitis.; Household members and others in close contact with people who have meningococcal meningitis should receive preventive antibiotics to avoid becoming infected themselves.; Adolescents ages 11 - 12 and adolescents entering high school (about age 15) who have not already received the vaccination.; All college freshmen who have not been vaccinated and are living in dorms.; Children age 2 and older who do not have their spleen or who have other problems with their immune system.; Those traveling to countries where diseases caused by meningococcus are very common (ask your doctor).

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov
Risk factors
Not completing the childhood vaccine schedule increases your risk of meningitis. So do a few other risk factors: Age. Most cases of viral meningitis occur in children younger than age 5. In the past, bacterial meningitis also usually affected young children. But since the mid-1980s, as a result of the protection offered by current childhood vaccines, the median age at which bacterial meningitis is diagnosed has shifted from 15 months to 25 years. Living in a community setting. College students living in dormitories, personnel on military bases, and children in boarding schools and child care facilities are at increased risk of meningococcal meningitis, probably because infectious diseases...

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Symptoms
Other symptoms that can occur with this disease:Fever and chills; Mental status changes ; Nausea and vomiting; Sensitivity to light (photophobia); Severe headache; Stiff neck (meningismus); Agitation ; Bulging fontanelles ; Decreased consciousness ; Opisthotonos ; Poor feeding or irritability in children; Rapid breathing

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov
Treatments and drugs
Bacterial meningitis Acute bacterial meningitis requires prompt treatment with intravenous antibiotics to ensure recovery and reduce the risk of complications. The antibiotic or combination of antibiotics that your doctor may choose depends on the type of bacteria causing the infection. Often, analyzing a sample of cerebrospinal fluid can help identify the bacteria. If you or your child has bacterial meningitis, your doctor may recommend a broad-spectrum antibiotic until he or she can determine the exact cause of the meningitis.

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com