By definition, meningitis involves inflammation of the meninges, that is, membranes that cover the brain and spine and cerebrospinal fluid. It is an extremely serious disease, triggered by a bacterium or a virus, which occurs more frequently in the summer and early autumn months.
The main symptoms are those of a severe flu: stiff neck and pain in the cervical area, fever, chills, headaches combined with vomiting, drowsiness and muscle pain, photophobia.
Doctors say that, most often, meningitis occurs among children or young adults (15-24 years), but there is a risk for the elderly, generally for all people who have a weakened immune system. Depending on what causes it, there are several types of meningitis: viral, acute bacterial, meningococcal, pneumococcal, staphylococcal, streptococcal, with gram-negative bacilli, tuberculosis, benign lymphocytic choriomeningitis, urinary meningitis, HIV meningitis and fungal meningitis.
Bacterial meningitis, for example, is caused by meningococcus or pneumococcus, bacteria that we find in the throat or nose, without usually causing ailments. The problem arises when these bacteria reach the bloodstream, then triggering the disease. Bacterial meningitis is, however, a rare form, but it is also very dangerous. It is transmitted from man to man through nasal secretions and saliva. If left untreated, it can cause irreversible brain disorders and result in patient death within 24 hours.
Viral meningitis is the most common form, and in severe cases, it causes fever and chills. According to official statistics, around 80% of young children do so annually. It is transmitted through food, water, but also by touching contaminated objects.
Careful! Meningitis, in all its forms, is a contagious disease and the germs that caused it can easily be transmitted from one person to another through coughing, sneezing or kissing.
Observe the symptoms, go to the doctor!
The doctor will determine exactly what type of meningitis the patient has and what treatment is required.To confirm the diagnosis, the patient will undergo several clinical tests
– Lumbar puncture – taking a sample of cerebrospinal fluid to detect the presence of microorganisms that cause meningitis.
– vaccine against measles, rubella and mumps – for children from 1 year -1 year and 3 months
– the vaccine against the spill – in children under 18 months, but also for adolescents and adults who have not had chickenpox