ABC Medical Center > Meningitis

What is Meningitis?

21:55 - 4 May , 2021


t is the swelling of the meninges, which are the membranes that cover and protect the brain and spinal cord, caused by an infection, initially showing symptoms such as high fever, neck numbness, and headache. If it is not treated in time, especially if it is due to a bacterial infection, it can trigger serious complications and even be life-threatening.

Although there may be non-infectious meningitis, caused by allergic reactions and conditions such as cancer and sarcoidosis, the most frequent cause is viral, bacterial, fungal, and parasitic infections, the first two being the most common. 

Most frequent types of meningitis:

It is a benign form that usually disappears on its own without major complications. The most common viruses that cause it are enterovirus and herpes simplex.
It can be caused by a direct infection in the meninges or by ear infections, nasal sinuses, neurosurgery, or skull fractures. There are several bacteria that can cause it, but they are usually:

  • Meningococcus.
  • Pneumococcus.
  • Haemophilus
  • Lysteria.

Signs and symptoms Meningitis

  • Intense migraine
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Photosensitivity.
  • High fever. 
  • Numb neck.
  • Weakness and drowsiness. 
  • Lack of appetite.
  • Lack of mental clarity.
  • Seizures.

Symptoms in babies:

  • Excessive sleep and difficulty waking up.
  • Lack of appetite.
  • Recurrent vomiting
  • Full fontanelle. 
  • Body and neck numbness.
  • High fever.
  • Continuous crying.

Meningitis not treated promptly can lead to serious, life-threatening complications, such as: 

  • Brain damage.
  • Seizures.
  • Kidney failure.
  • Hearing damage.
  • Memory disorders.
  • Shock and death.

Diagnosis and treatment Meningitis

Once your doctor analyzes your symptoms and clinical history, he or she will perform a physical examination and order a series of tests to confirm the diagnosis, such as blood cultures to identify bacteria, computed tomography, and MRI to observe the degree of inflammation, and a lumbar puncture to obtain an accurate diagnosis.

The treatments used will depend on the type of meningitis:

Bacterial: broad-spectrum antibiotics are prescribed if the specific bacteria causing the infection is not known, along with corticosteroids to fight inflammation. 

Viral: There are no medications for this type of meningitis, but most of the time it clears up on its own in a few weeks. However, the doctor will recommend rest and keep you hydrated, in addition to prescribing painkillers and anti-inflammatories. 

At the Neurological Center, a select group of highly professional and certified doctors in the various neurological specialties are ready to assist you with the quality and warmth that characterizes us.

Our mission is to provide you with comprehensive and multidisciplinary care programs for the prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of nervous system diseases, always focusing our activities on your safety.

Nervous system specialties

  • Neurology
  • Neurosurgery
  • Spine surgery
  • Pediatric neurosurgery
  • Neurophysiology
  • Neuro-rehabilitation
  • Neuro-pathology
  • Interventional neuro-radiology
  • Neuropsychology
  • Neuro-oncology
  • Neuro-otology
  • Epilepsy
  • Neuro-ophthalmology
  • Neuroimaging


  • Chang FDA, Carranza ZAJ, Gutiérrez LYI. Diagnóstico y tratamiento de la meningitis bacteriana aguda. Revista Médica Sinergia. 2020;5(06):1-13.
  • Chaves LE, Solís SJB. Meningitis por criptococo. Revista Médica Sinergia. 2021;6(07):1-8.
  • Guerrero GMN, Hernández MR, Rosales GAA, et al. Meningitis por Campylobacter jejuni en el periodo neonatal: reporte de caso. Enf Infec Microbiol. 2019;39(4):140-142.
  • Laínez-Mejía JL, Lázaro-Molina J, Yamileth-Ávila B. Caracterización epidemiológica, clínica y de laboratorio de la meningitis bacteriana en un hospital escuela. Rev Mex Neuroci. 2018;19(5):19-26.

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