Meningitis is an inflammation of the layers  or meninges that encompass your brain and spinal cord.

The swelling from meningitis ordinarily triggers symptoms like headaches, fever and a stiff neck.

Most instances of meningitis in the are caused by a viral disease, yet bacterial and parasitic infections are also different causes. A few instances of meningitis may even improve without treatment intwi weeks. Others can be dangerous and require antibiotic treatment.

Seek immediate care if you discover that somebody has meningitis. Early treatment of bacterial meningitis can avert medical complications.


Early meningitis symptoms are similar to seasonal influenza (flu). Symptoms may last for more than a few hours or over a couple of days. These are the symptoms:

  • Sudden high fever
  • Stiff neck
  • Severe headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Confusion or difficulty concentrating
  • Seizures
  • Drowsiness
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Lack of appetite or thirst
  • Skin rashes, as in meningococcal meningitis
  • Constant crying in infants
  • Poor feeding in infants
  • A bulge in the soft spot on baby’s head (fontanel)


Your doctor can diagnose meningitis from a medical history, a physical exam and certain tests. Amid the exam, your doctor may check for indications of disease around the head, ears, throat and the skin along the spine.

Diagnostic tests that may be requested are the following:

  • Blood cultures
  • Imaging in the form of computerized tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance (MR) scans of the head
  • Spinal tap (lumbar puncture)
  • Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis


Antibiotic agents can’t treat viral meningitis, and most cases heal on their own in a few weeks. Treatment of mild viral meningitis would include the following:

  • Bed rest
  • Plenty of fluids
  • Over-the-counter pain medications
  • Corticosteroids to reduce swelling in the brain
  • Anticonvulsant medication to control seizures
  • Antiviral medication, in cases of herpes meningitis















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