Meningitis: A Look

By L'empereur du Québec, Thomas Ouellette III


is the inflammation of the meninges
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The arrows are pointing to sulci filled with and leaking pus after meningitis.


the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord, consisting (outward to inward) the dura mater, the arachnoid mater, and the pia mater
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The term meningitis comes from Greek μῆνιγξ méninx, "membrane" and the medical suffix -itis, "inflammation"


  • Sudden high fever
  • Severe headache distinguished from other types of headaches
  • Vomiting or nausea with headache
  • Confusion
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Seizures
  • Sleepiness
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Lack of appetite
  • Neck pain
  • Neck stiffness
  • Skin rash

See a doctor for

  • Sudden high fever
  • Severe headache distinguished from other tupes of headaches
  • Stiff neck
  • Neck pain
  • Seizures

Caused by


  • Streptococcus pneumoniae
  • Neisseria meningitidis
  • Haemophilus influenzae
  • Listeria monocytogenes
  • Staphylococci

  • Herpes simplex 1
  • Herpes simplex 2
  • Mumps
  • Influenza
  • Epstein-Barr
  • Measles
  • Rubella
  • Polio
  • Others

  • Candida
  • Hisatoplasma
  • Coccidia
  • Crytococcus

  • Stongyloides stercoralis
  • Angiostrongylus cantonensis
  • Naegleria fowleri

  • Tumors
  • Allergic chemical reactions

Why should I care?

Meningitis is a worldwide disease affecting millions that causes permanent brain damage and an agonizing death in as little as 3 days.
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This is your brain after meningitis

How can I avoid getting it?

Cover your nose and mouth during sandstorms, wash hands and body regularly. In addition, get the Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), Pneumococcal conjugate (PCV7), Haemophilus type b and Neisseria meningitidis serogroups C and Y ((Hib-MenCY), Pneumococcal polysacccharide (PPSV) and Meningcoccal conjugate (MCV4) vaccines.


Although meningitis is year round, during the dry season, dust winds, cold nights, and upper respiratory infections combine to damage the nasopharyngeal mucosa, increasing the chance of an meningitis-causing organim to reach the meninges and cause meningitis.

At the regional level, transmission of Neisseria meningitidis is facilitated by overcrowded housing and large population displacements due to pilgrimages and traditional markets.

Meningitis itself has no specific pattern in it's spatial distribution.

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The red is the meningitis belt, the brown represents epidemic zones, and the grey sporadic cases only


During the 2009 epidemic season, 14 African countries implemented enhanced surveillance and reported 88,199 suspected cases, including 5352 deaths. In this region, known as the Meningitis Belt, there are epidemics every 7 to 14 years. Of the forms, the bacterial kills the most people.

How is it treated?

Meningitis may be treated through ear drainage in some viral forms, cortisones, IV antibiotics, bed rest, plenty of fluids, pain medications, and antifungals.

Meningitis and Social Conditions

Between 1995 and 2009 in Salvador, Brazil, there were 3456 confirmed cases of meningitis with 9.1/100,000 individuals contracting it every year, with a 16.7% fatality rate. Children under 5 and males were the most affected. The areas with the worst living conditions had the highest fatality rate from the disease, reflecting the lack of access to quick and quality medical care. Families who lost young adults to meningitis may be in a difficult financial situation without a source of income; and caring for those crippled by it is difficult and expensive.