Meningitis – causes and symptoms

Meningitis is a serious disease from which 1000 people per day are dying. Mostly affects the younger population but it is possible to occur in older people. Persons suffering from a chronic disease or have weak immune system are at increased risk of developing meningitis

What is meningitis and what causes it?

Meningitis is inflammation of the meninges, or membranes that are surrounding the brain. This disease is often a result of infection that can come to the brain membranes through blood circulation or surrounding structures (paranasal sinuses, middle ear, etc.). It can be transmitted by dirty hands, coughing, sneezing or close contact.

Depending on what type of microorganism is the cause of the infection, we distinguish:

  • Viral meningitis
  • Bacterial meningitis
  • Fungi


Signs and symptoms:

  • Stiff neck
  • Photophobia (light sensitivity)
  • Severe headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • High temperature
  • Decreased appetite
  • Disturbance of consciousness
  • Skin rashes


What are the possible complications?

The longer the disease is present, the greater is the risk of complications:

  • Hearing loss
  • Shock
  • Kidney damage
  • Epilepsy
  • Speech problems
  • Visual impairment
  • Cognitive disorders
  • Death

Viral meningitis can pass without treatment, but in case of bacterial meningitis, you need to react immediately and take appropriate antibiotic therapy. Delay of treatment for bacterial meningitis increases the risk of side effects and can have fatal outcome within a few days.

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