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- Streptococcus pneumoniae (the bacteria that causes pneumonia )
- Neisseria meningitidis
Haemophilus influenzae b
- In the United States, widespread immunization has almost eliminated meningitis due to Hib
- Listeria monocytogenes meningitis
- Escherichia coli meningitis
- Mycobacterium tuberculosis meningitis
- Group B Streptococcus meningitis
- Age: infancy and early childhood; increased age
- People in close and prolonged contact with patients with meningitis due to Hib or Neisseria meningitidis
- A weakened immune system due to HIV infection or other conditions
- Smoking (for meningitis due to Neisseria meningitidis ) and being exposed to second-hand smoke
- Living in close proximity to others, such as in dormitories and military barracks (for meningitis due to Neisseria meningitidis )
- A history of epidural steroid injections or other invasive spinal procedures
- High fever
- Very stiff, sore neck
- Red or purple skin rash
- Bluish skin color
- Sensitivity to bright lights
- Mental confusion
- Unexplained high fever or any form of temperature instability, including a low body temperature
- Jaundice (yellow skin color)
- Feeding poorly or refusing to eat
- Tightness or bulging of soft spots between skull bones
- Difficulty awakening
- Spinal tap—removal of a small amount of cerebrospinal fluid to check for bacteria
- Other cultures—testing samples of blood, urine, mucous, and/or pus from skin infections
- MRI—a test that uses magnetic waves to make pictures of structures inside the body (to be sure the inflammation is not from some other cause, such as a tumor)
- CT—a type of x-ray that uses a computer to make pictures of structures inside the body
- Antibiotics and corticosteroids—often given together
- Pain medications and sedatives may be used
- Anticonvulsants may be prescribed to prevent seizures
- Talk to your doctor to find out which vaccines you and your child need. Examples include:
- If you are a healthcare worker or have close contact with someone who is infected, take preventive antibiotics.
- Buy pasteurized milk and milk products. This can prevent meningitis due to Listeria monocytogenes .
- If you are pregnant, your doctor will monitor you to make sure the infection is not passed to your baby.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention http://www.cdc.gov
Meningitis Foundation of American http://www.meningitisfoundationofamerica.org
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke http://www.ninds.nih.gov
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
Meningitis Research Foundation of Canada http://www.meningitis.ca
Bamberger D. Diagnosis, initial management, and prevention of meningitis. . Am Fam Physician . 2010 Dec 15;82(12):1491-1498. Available at: http://www.aafp.org/afp/2010/1215/p1491.html . Accessed October 12, 2012.
Beers MH, Berkow R. The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy . 17th ed. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons;1999.
Meningitis and encephalitis fact sheet. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke website. Available at: http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/encephalitis%5Fmeningitis/detail%5Fencephalitis%5Fmeningitis.htm . Updated February 16, 2011. Accessed October 12, 2012.
Meningococcal disease. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/meningococcal/about/index.html . Updated March 15, 2012. Accessed October 12, 2012.
Meningococcal vaccine. EBSCO Health Library website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/healthLibrary/ . Updated September 24, 2012. Accessed October 12, 2012.
10/2/2009 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance https://dynamed.ebscohost.com/about/about-us : Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Updated recommendation from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) for revaccination of persons at prolonged increased risk for meningococcal disease. MMWR. 2009;58(37):1042-1043. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, MMWR website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5837a4.htm . Published September 25, 2009. Accessed October 2, 2009.
4/22/2011 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance https://dynamed.ebscohost.com/about/about-us : Lee CC, Middaugh NA, Howie SR, Ezzati M. Association of secondhand smoke exposure with pediatric invasive bacterial disease and bacterial carriage: a systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS Med. 2010;7(12).
- Reviewer: Marcin Chwistek, MD
- Review Date: 10/2012 -
- Update Date: 10/31/2012 -