Meningitis is a serious illness that strikes small children. Since infants and toddlers get so many colds and sicknesses, it is hard for parents to recognize when there is meningitis. Although anyone can get it, today's blog focuses on children.
So what is meningitis and what are the signs and symptoms?
What is it and what are the symptoms?
Meningitis is an infection of the lining and fluid that cover the outside of the brain and spinal cord. It can be caused by a virus or by bacteria. Some of the symptoms are:
- High fever
- Very painful headache
- Vomiting-often projectile
- Neck pain and stiffness
- Sensitivity to light
Neck pain and stiffness is generally thought to be the most worrisome symptom for meningitis. If your child has any of these symptoms, immediate medical attention is required. How is it diagnosed? If a doctor suspects meningitis after a physical exam, the definitive diagnosis comes from a spinal tap. A needle is inserted in the back to get a sample of the spinal fluid to determine whether or not it is infected with bacteria. How it it treated? For viral meningitis, antibiotics do not help because antibiotics treat bacteria not viruses. If it is bacterial, then antibiotics are given. If treatment is begun early, then most meningitis is curable. However, meningitis can cause permanent brain damage and even death if not treated timely. At Frank Spector Law we have experience with cases of meningitis in situations where doctors and hospitals failed to diagnose it and begin treatment promptly. We hope that you never have experienced this but if you have, please call us toll free at 1-800-299-HURT . Email us at [email protected] or fill out our contact form on this page or any page on our website.