Doctor insights on:
Bacterial Meningitis Incubation Period
What is the incubation period for bacterial meningitis? Mildly sore neck and headache last night when I look down. Today no headache just sore neck.
I just found out someone I shared a cup with was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis 10 days ago. So far I have no symptoms. Am I past the incubation?
Low risk, no worries: Your risk probably is very low from this, and we're all commonly exposed to meningitis bacteria anyway; they're commonly carried by healthy people. Still, this could have slightly increased your risk. You should ask your doctor, or call your local or state health department and ask whether your exposure was close enough to justify preventive treatment; or to get the meningococcal vaccine. ...Read more
Exposure/susceptable: It's puzzeling but some people can cary meningitis germs in their nose or throat & never get ill. We can get exposed to droplets in a sneeze, cough, kiss or mucous planted on a door handle. Touching our face with unwashed fingers carries germs that gain entrance to our nose/mouth/eye & if susceptabe, the germ begins to invade. We have cut the #'s of kid cases with vaccines & many adults could benifit. ...Read more
Possible, unlikely: Most Molleret's meningitis (recurrent aseptic [viral, non-bacterial] meningitis) is due to recurrent herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV2) infection of the central nervous system. Look at it as recurrent genital herpes of the brain or spinal cord. (True!) Its frequency is unrelated to prior bacterial meningitis. However, after bacterial meningiits, some people might have mild recurrent symptoms. ...Read more
Had bacterial meningitis- confirmed with LP and treated. Why is it that some recover and some die?
Luck/good docs: Some forms of bacterial meningitis are more aggressive & time sensitive than others which leaves a narrow window for recognition and treatment to be successful. Some patients have better individual response to germ invasion which slows the germ until meds kick in. If you have an aggressive germ and a poor immune system you are more likely to die, even when treatment is started quickly. ...Read more
Germ + invasion: Your typical meningitis germ can be acquired from contact with an asymptomatic carrier or actual meningitis patient in secretions they leave behind. This includes on objects or surface or through direct contact. Your hands can pick them up, pass them to your face where they can enter the nose or upper airway. They can linger for a while & do nothing or begin to invade & cause you an infection. ...Read more
Not long, just hours: Left untreated, bacterial meningitis is deadly, leading to death in hours to days. Even when treated appropriately, the risk of death still remains very high at 10%. Neurologic complications can occur despite the best of intentions. Check out http://www. Mayoclinic. Com/health/meningitis/ds00118 & http://my. Clevelandclinic. Org/disorders/meningitis/hic_bacterial_meningitis. Aspx for more information. ...Read more
Potentially fatal: Although we have seen a great reduction of the bacterial meningitis frequency in the us since the introduction of the hib vaccine in the '90's, bacterial meningitis does still occur and may be devastating. It is more common in unvaccinated populations & includes several agents. The case fatality & complication rate varies with the germ and how quickly treatment is started. ...Read more
Very serious...: Bacterial meningitis is a very serious infection. Factors that improve outcome depend on which bacteria is causing the infection and how sensitive it is to antibiotics. The earlier a diagnosis can be made and the proper antibiotics and supportive treatment can be given, the better the child will do. Many children do survive meningitis with no long term problems, but some do not. ...Read more
Yes: The history, clinical exam and spinal tap make the diagnosis. ...Read more
Highly unlikely: The symptoms of meningitis are fever, stiff neck, head ache, altered mental status and in some cases seizures. Viral meningitis is usually milder than bacterial meningitis. It would be very unusual to have bacterial meningitis without a fever. This would only occur in the very elderly or the severely immunosuppressed. ...Read more
Varies: Different bacteria produce bacterial meningitis, so there is not a universal answer to this question. Nevertheless, usually close contact with human secretions is necessary to produce meningitis. The bacteria that commonly cause bacterial meningitis due not typically survive for a long period of time outside the human body. ...Read more
Neonatal meningitis: Ecoli and group b streptococcus are the two most common causes of meningitis in infants. Women are now screened during pregnancy to see if they are carriers and if a women is screen positive she is give antibacterial agents during delivery to prevent infection in her baby and herself. Less commonly, staphylococcus, enterococcus & listeria occur. Neisseria meningitis (seen in adults) is rare. ...Read more
Treated early: Outcome should be good if treatment is started early. ...Read more
Appropriate antibiotics based on blood and cerebrospinal fluid cultires and sensitivities is the treatment
but treatment should not wait till the culture results are avalable so if you suspect meningitis start the broader coveragetill results are ready
supportive care IV fluids and maitain vital functions, bp, respiration, hydration etc. ...Read more
Rarely: Cefotaxime and vancomycin remain drugs of choice in most cases of bacterial meningitis. Meropenem may be considered for vancomycin-resistant pneumococcal meningitis. Precaution has to be exercised since Meropenem is known to induce seizure in individuals with low seizure threshold. ...Read more
Possibly: I can remember one 8 yo kid that arrived in a coma with low body temperature, low blood pressure & died within hours of Meningococcal meningitis/sepsis. He also showed no increased in white count or other sign of an immune response. That was the exception to the usual presentation with fever, irritability etc for hundreds of cases I treated. Beware the always/never idea for anything. ...Read more
Meningitis: Meningococcal is one type of Bacterial infection. ...Read more
Tertiary centers: Tertiary centers generally offer a wide variety of services and specialists, and are often teaching hospitals (have residency programs). People with bacterial meningitis are best treated in facilities with an intensive care unit and Infectious Disease specialists. Best wishes. ...Read more
Sorry...: Sorry to hear you've been ill with a serious illness. I hope things are going well. Do you have a question we can help you with?? ...Read more
Numbers/pattern: In any meningitis you expect to see white blood cells. With viral they are relatively few and mostly lymphocytes. With bacterial you see lots, to the point the usually watery clear CSF can look like milk, and the WBC's are mostly polymorphonuclear cells. Bacteria eat the glucose so the value is low, viruses do not so it stays normal. With bacterial you can see them with stains, virus, not. ...Read more
My girlfriend had bacterial meningitis about 6 weeks ago. Is it safe for us to resume sexual activities now?
Yes: As long as she is better.Get a more detailed answer ›
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