Health TipsCommon Symptoms of Bacterial Meningitis

Common Symptoms of Bacterial Meningitis – There are many ways to tell whether you have Bacterial Meningitis, and all the signs and symptoms can vary based on the person affected. Whether it’s the flu or a bacterial infection, your healthcare provider can determine the best treatment for you. Bacterial meningitis is a serious illness, and if you think you might have it, seek medical advice right away.

Characteristics of Bacterial Meningitis Symptoms

Bacterial meningitis is a bacterial infection of the sac that surrounds the brain and spinal cord. The most common symptoms of this condition are headache, sensitivity to light, and neck stiffness. In addition, fever is common. Acute bacterial meningitis is curable with antibiotic therapy and corticosteroid injections. Bacterial meningitis can also be prevented by vaccination.

While babies are particularly susceptible to bacterial meningitis, adults of any age can contract it as well. Infectious diseases like meningitis tend to be spread through large groups, so college campuses are notorious for outbreaks of the disease. Other conditions that may increase your risk of contracting meningitis include HIV infection and cerebrospinal fluid leakage. Bacterial meningitis symptoms may include seizures and rash.

Depending on the type of bacteria, bacterial meningitis can cause severe complications, including a stroke, loss of vision, or even death. If left untreated, it can even lead to life-threatening complications such as brain damage, hearing loss, and blindness. Bacterial meningitis is caused by the same germs that cause strep throat and pneumonia. Symptoms of bacterial meningitis can also lead to sepsis, which is the body’s response to a serious infection.

Cras That Meningitis Sufferers Should Avoid

Most people get their first vaccination during infancy and childhood. They continue to get booster shots when needed when their immunity is compromised or their risk for infection increases. However, if you do contract meningitis, seek medical advice immediately. While you’re at home, try to avoid close contact with ill people, and wash your hands regularly. You should also clean common objects in your home and avoid sharing.

The signs of bacterial meningitis may not be obvious until the inflammation begins. In many cases, bacterial meningitis begins as a cold, but progresses to frank meningitis with a high fever and other symptoms. Bacteria usually enters the body through the bloodstream. It’s possible for bacteria to directly infect the meninges following a skull fracture, a sinus infection, or surgery on the brain or spinal cord.

Symptoms of viral meningitis are usually mild and can occur in babies and children. They can also occur when a child has an untreated cold sore. In both cases, the infection spreads through the bloodstream, through the nerve endings, and into the fluid surrounding the brain. People of all ages can develop meningitis, but younger children are especially susceptible to it. If you suspect that you have the symptoms of bacterial meningitis, see your doctor immediately. You may need to undergo lab tests to determine the exact type of infection.

Signs of Having Meningitis

While fever is one of the most noticeable signs of meningitis, it may not be present in babies younger than three months of age. Other signs include stiff neck and headache, poor appetite, and extreme sleepiness. Some children may develop seizures, lethargy, or coma as a result of bacterial meningitis, which requires prompt medical attention. If you suspect that your child has bacterial meningitis, get them checked right away. Your child’s medical care provider can prescribe antibiotics and other treatments to prevent further infections.

The most common types of meningitis are caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae type b, and Neisseria meningitidis. Vaccination of children has significantly reduced the incidence of Haemophilus influenzae type b, although some strains can still cause the disease. Bacterial Meningitis symptoms may also include fever, headache, neck stiffness, and sensitivity to light.


Valmari, P., et al. “Childhood bacterial meningitis: initial symptoms and signs related to age, and reasons for consulting a physician.” European journal of pediatrics 146.5 (1987): 515-518.

Scarborough, Matthew, and Guy E. Thwaites. “The diagnosis and management of acute bacterial meningitis in resource-poor settings.” The Lancet Neurology 7.7 (2008): 637-648.


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