January 16, 2022

All about meningitis

The meninges, in the brain, are membranes that surround the central nervous system, the intracranial portion of the cranial nerves, and the roots of the spinal naves. They contain cerebrospinal fluid that dampens shocks during movement.

Their inflammation is called '' meningitis ''.
There are two kinds. Viral meningitis, the most common because it accounts for about 80% of cases, is the least dangerous. It often gets better spontaneously, unless the virus is herpes. In this case, it comes under emergency treatment. Bacterial meningitis is extremely serious and requires care in the early hours. The treatment consists in absorbing as quickly as possible theantibiotic adequate.

Early inflammation
However, meninges are difficult to diagnose because the signs are not very specific. The signs are usually fever with chills, violent headache, vomiting, painful glare at the sight of the light, stiff neck, constipation and back pain. The patient may have signs such as numbness or obtuseness, or even be in a coma.

In children,
that meningitis affects more broadly, the additional signs are trouble waking up, loss of appetite, pale complexion, an eruption of purplish spots or bruises and a tense fontanel. Added to this are fever, crying and vomiting.

To establish a diagnosis
your doctor will ask you if the pain appeared suddenly, if there was surgery or disease and will certainly indicate a lumbar puncture to guide the treatment. A little cerebrospinal fluid will be removed and if the examination is slightly painful, it is essential.

Our advice

In France, the vaccine against bacterial meningitis is available to prevent meningitis. It has an efficiency of more than 90%.

Managing Meningitis - Mayo Clinic (January 2022)