Nervous System Infections

Diagnosis of purulent meningitis - symptoms, treatment and consequences

purulent meningitis Purulent meningitis is an infectious disease that affects the membranes of the brain or spinal cord, due to the ingress of bacteria, accompanied by the formation of purulent foci. This is the most severe of the inflammatory diseases of the central nervous system.

Affects a person at any age, but most often they purulent meningitis diagnosed in newborns and children under 5 years.

Usually, inflammation is caused by streptococci, pneumococci, staphylococci, E. coli and other pathogens. In the brain, the infection gets through the blood and provokes inflammation there. Outbreaks of purulent meningitis occur in the autumn-spring period.


  • Causes of the inflammatory process
  • Pathways of infection, incubation period
  • Features of the disease
  • Complaints and manifestations
  • Assistance in a medical institution
    • Traditional medicine
    • Traditional medicine
  • Complications and predictions are no good. ..

Causes of the inflammatory process

The cause of the disease is a direct infectionin the shell of the brain is the primary form. With pathogens, a person has to contact daily in everyday life.

Secondary meningitis develops against the background of diseases of acute respiratory infections, acute respiratory viral infection, tonsillitis, tuberculosis, pneumonia and others, due to lack of timely treatment or due to the presence of weakened immunity. Infection can be entered artificially - when performing surgical intervention with non-sterile instruments, as well as in the case of craniocerebral trauma.

Provoke the disease smoking, exposure to stress, depression, alcohol or drug dependence.

Also, the risks of infection include frequent hypothermia, sore throats, otitis, weakening of the immune system. In children up to 5 years of age, the causative agents are most often salmonella, streptococcus and E. coli. If the mother is already infected with these infections or with more purulent meningitis, the child may get infected in utero during pregnancy.

Pathways of infection, incubation period

Infection penetrates the body through the respiratory system( lungs, throat), digestion( stomach, some parts of the intestine), patients with infection with meningitis caries teeth. Through the sources, the bacteria enter the bloodstream and reach the brain and spinal cord, where they provoke a purulent inflammatory process.

The following ways of infection with meningitis are distinguished:

  1. Airborne - the causative agent is excreted from a sick person during breathing, coughing, and talking.
  2. Fecal-oral - is transmitted through household items, when in contact with the patient's dirty hands.
  3. Hematogenous - the infection is transmitted through the blood vessels of the patient - an insect bite, intrauterine infection.

The incubation period of meningitis depends on the form of the disease and the immunity of the patient. Usually purulent meningitis develops rapidly: in the primary incubation period lasts 2-5 days, and can develop in 12 hours. In other species this time varies from 2 to 20 days.

Features of the disease

A feature of purulent meningitis in children is its onset, which is manifested by motor excitability, crying, general anxiety. Often there is vomiting and diarrhea.

In a newborn, meningitis can be recognized by swelling and increased pulsation of the fontanel, and it also has seizures and screams at the onset of the disease.

In adults, purulent meningitis begins rapidly - often within an hour the patient rises sharply to 39-40 degrees and there is a severe headache that goes to the neck, back and even legs. There is severe vomiting, loss of consciousness, cramps and nonsense.

A man strives to adopt the position of a "dog" - lying on his side, toss his head back, and his legs to his stomach. This position is taken at a subconscious level - the patient tends to stretch the spine to reduce intracranial pressure.

Complaints and manifestations of

inflammatory process Symptoms of the disease in children and adults are manifested in the form of weakness, cough, runny nose, diarrhea and vomiting, skin rashes, if purulent meningitis occurs due to other diseases, then there is weakness, drowsiness, pain over the eyebrows or under the eyes, fever, pain in the bones.

Children under 3 years of age have the characteristic features of the symptoms:

  • during sleep, it stretches to the head, it is hard to wake it;
  • fontanus strains and protrudes over the cranial bones or sinks;
  • the child moans, does not go on hands, monotonously cries;
  • the sick kid does not sleep well, there may be cramps in the dream or skin rashes can be noted;
  • the child tries to lie with his legs pressed on his side and to throw his head back.

Before meningitis, a child often has otitis, pneumonia, bronchitis.

In adults, the symptoms of purulent meningitis differ somewhat. Here is shown:

  • a sharp headache;
  • photophobia, dizziness, weakness;
  • high temperature;
  • inability to bend the head;
  • lack of the ability to stretch his legs in the lap;
  • flexion of hip and knee joints not controlled by the patient;
  • vomiting;
  • is a red rash on the body;
  • difficulties in orienting, hallucinating and coma;
  • affection of the joints and some internal organs - the stomach, kidneys, bladder.

meningeal symptoms

If signs are found, especially in young children, an ambulance team should be called immediately to hospitalize the patient in the hospital for immediate assistance.

Assistance in a medical institution

The main method of diagnosis in adults and children is the examination of cerebrospinal fluid, for which the puncture is done.
brain diagnosis Also carried out computed tomography, head ultrasound, MRI - designed for differential diagnosis of meningitis from tumors, abscesses, encephalitis, strokes.

Secondary meningitis can be detected by congestion in the fundus. In children, in addition to taking a puncture, blood is taken for analysis - according to a large number of leukocytes and neutrophils, an accurate diagnosis is determined.

Treatment of severe forms of purulent meningitis is carried out only in a hospital. If the course of the disease in the baby passes in mild form, then it can be treated at home. Adults undergo treatment only in the hospital.
The main goal in the treatment of purulent meningitis is the timely hospitalization of the patient and the choice of the right therapies.

How the outcome of the disease depends on how timely the therapy is started. When placed in a hospital it is important to identify the source and cause of infection in order to prescribe effective drugs.

Traditional medicine

Treatment of purulent meningitis in both adults and children begins as soon as the doctor suspected the inflammatory process of the brain. As the beginning of therapy, a broad-spectrum antibiotic is introduced, after which the patient is hospitalized. While the diagnosis is being carried out, the patient continues to be injected with antibiotics. Having established an accurate diagnosis, a treatment is prescribed.

Therapy involves the use of antibiotics of cephalosporin groups, penicillins and macrolides. They are administered at the maximum admissible doses, every 4 hours and after a noticeable improvement, treatment with antibiotics continues for up to a month.

For the removal of unpleasant symptoms, other drugs are prescribed:

  • to stop vomiting and to remove nausea - Cerucal;
  • to relieve the headache will help Baralgin or Ketanol;
  • to eliminate intoxication and prevent dehydration - sodium chloride solution, glucose, osmotic compounds;
  • to avoid edema of the brain help diuretics.

Cerucal When purulent meningitis is performed trepanation of the skull to remove pus. If this is a secondary form of the disorder, then drugs are prescribed to treat the underlying disease.

After improvement of health the patient is sent to home aftercare and subsequent dispensary supervision.

Children are observed in a pediatrician, infectious disease specialist and neurologist for 2 years with regular examination, first - every 3 months, then once every six months. Adults after discharge from the hospital are observed with a therapist, neurologist, infectious disease specialist and psychiatrist for two years.

The patient should visit the specialists 2 times a month for the first 3 months, and then every 3 months. In the second year of follow-up, one visit to the doctors is sufficient for six months. Terms are valid in the absence of deterioration in health.

Traditional medicine

Traditional methods of treatment help alleviate the condition of the patient, but do not help cure the disease itself. Applied:

  1. For the removal of seizures well helps infusion of herb thistle. thistle herb infusion
  2. Chamomile tea helps the patient relieve stress and calm down .
  3. Lavender infusion relieves seizures and is diuretic : 3 teaspoons of dried flowers to 2 cups of boiled water, infuse for 30 minutes.
  4. To remove irritation and headache will help to collect from flowers of lavender, roots of primrose and valerian, mint leaves and rosemary taken 20 grams and filled with a glass of boiling water. Drink 500 ml per day of this infusion after cooling and filtration.

At home, before the ambulance arrives, the patient must be provided with mental and physical rest. Close the windows with curtains, so that the light does not increase the headache and does not blind the eyes, to ensure silence.

On the head, arms to the elbows and legs to the knees, put ice along the spine or rags soaked in cold water and change them as they warm up. You can give the patient a drug for headache.

Complications and predictions - no good. ..

The consequences and complications of purulent meningitis in adults include:

  • cerebrosthenic syndrome;
  • headaches;
  • fatigue;
  • diffuse attention;
  • irritability;
  • tearfulness;
  • lethargy;
  • disturbance of thinking.

Cerebral edema may occur, which may occur, as in the first hours after infection, and within 2-3 days. The prognosis of treatment in adults, if it is started in a timely manner, is favorable. Only in the absence of timely treatment occurs the death of the patient( in 14% of cases).

In children, purulent meningitis can cause the following consequences and complications: brain hydrocephalus

  • hydrocephalus;
  • epilepsy;
  • headaches;
  • development gap;
  • memory degradation;
  • disturbed the psyche of speech, hearing.

Severe forms lead to brain edema, kidney failure, endocrine system diseases.

For newborns, the disease is accompanied by complications in the form of hydrocephalus, blindness, deafness, epilepsy, mental retardation. To early complications include convulsive syndrome and cerebral edema.

The prognosis for babies remains unfavorable - if purulent meningitis is detected in a newborn child, 15-25% of such children die, ie 3 babies out of 4 survive.

vaccination against meningitis The most effective remedy against the disease is vaccination. It is done against three main pathogens: hemophilic rods, pneumococcus and meningococcus.

Eliminate the occurrence of secondary meningitis by eliminating purulent foci with the proper treatment of otitis, tonsillitis, furunculosis and others.

In the presence of the first signs of the disease, you should immediately contact a specialist, calling the doctor at home or emergency room.

The timely treatment of purulent meningitis gives a favorable prognosis for recovery without dangerous complications.

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