Meningitis - Get information and read articles on Meningitis signs, symptoms, causes, treatment, prevention and diagnosis at onlymyhealth.com, your complete health guide.
Meningitis is most commonly caused because of infection with bacteria or virus. Find out steps that can help to prevent meningitis include washing hands frequently with soap and water, adopting healthy ways of living and getting vaccinated.
Meningitis is an infection of the cerebrospinal fluid and the covering around the brain (meninges). Most cases of meningitis are caused by viral or bacterial infection. Bacterial meningitis is considered as a medical emergency because it has a fulminate course. Viral infections are milder and may get better without treatment or with supportive care.
Signs and symptoms of viral and bacterial meningitis are almost similar and can be difficult to differentiate. Some symptoms suggestive of meningitis include high fever, headache, drowsiness and confusion, seizures or fits, stiff neck (less common in young children) and sensitivity to light (being unable to tolerate bright lights that is photophobia).
Meningitis is considered to be a medical emergency and is treated in a hospital. Treatment of meningitis includes antibiotics or anti-viral drugs, supportive treatment such as fever reducing medicines, fluids and management of complications such as shock, convulsions, dehydration and brain swelling.
Meningitis can be caused due various causes such as infection with bacteria or virus, chemical irritation, drug allergies, fungal infections and brain tumour. Prognosis for meningitis depends on the underlying cause and severity of infection. Bacterial meningitis is considered a medical emergency as it can progress rapidly and lead to septicaemia (blood poisoning), brain damage or even be fatal despite treatment.
Meningitis is a medical emergency and an extremely serious type of infection. Delay in treatment increases the risk of complications. Consult a doctor if you have fever with other symptoms suggestive of meningitis such as headache, stiff neck, seizures or sensitivity to light.
Meningitis is most often caused by infection by bacteria, fungus or a virus. In most cases of acute bacterial meningitis, antibiotics are given for about 2 to 3 weeks. Most patients with viral meningitis recover with treatment in about 7-10 days. People with fungal meningitis need antifungal medication for some weeks to months.
Meningitis is diagnosed based on history, symptoms and certain tests. Diagnostic tests that may be done include CT scan or MRI scan of the brain, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis and blood test. Analysis of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is a definitive test to diagnose meningitis.