Meningitis [Show Notes]

Episode 64 – Meningitis

Meningitis = inflammation of meninges

Generalized symptoms:  fever, headache, stiff neck, light sensitivity, confusion, lethargy, 

4 types of infectious meningitis

1. bacterial – we have a vaccine for that! 3-7 days; spreads in close communities (like college dorms).  Spreads through prolonged contact.  Confirmed through spinal tap and cerebrospinal fluid culture

2. viral – most common type; can be caused by lots of viruses: enterovirus, mumps, measles, flu, west nile.  7-10 days.  This is why I believe in vaccines!

3. Fungal – not contagious; most common in patient with suppressed immune systems or secondary from surgery.

4. Parasitic – Rare yet fatal.  Amoeba enters through nose from warm contaminated fresh water sources or pool, even hot springs (warm up to 115* F).  Only 31 cases in the 10 years between 2002 and 2012.  Destroys brain tissue ~ 5 days. 

Non-infectious causes:  Surgery, injury, lupus, cancer

The most important thing is that all of this be monitored by a doctor – ALWAYS!!

2 quick tests for meningitis: Kernig’s sign; Brudzinski’s sign 

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“Radio Martini” Kevin MacLeod (  Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

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