Basic Summary for Meningitis


Main name of condition: Meningitis
Other names or spellings:

What is Meningitis?
  Brief description of Meningitis: Dangerous infection of the membranes surrounding the brain.
  Parent types of Meningitis: Viral diseases, Bacterial diseases, Brain conditions, Brain infection, Diseases contagious from droplets, Diseases contagious from saliva
  Organs Affected by Meningitis: brain, meninges
  Types of Meningitis: Viral meningitis, Enterovirus-caused meningitis, Arbovirus-caused meningitis, Measles-caused meningitis, Mumps-caused meningitis, Chickenpox-caused meningitis, Bacterial meningitis, Meningococcal Meningitis, Pneumococcal meningitis, Hib meningitis, TB meningitis, E coli meningitis, Syphilitic meningitis, Group B Streptococcus (GBS) meningitis, Fungal meningitis, Cryptococcal Meningitis, Meningitis subtypes by area affected:, Cerebral meningitis, Spinal meningitis, Leptomeningitis
How many people get Meningitis?
  Incidence (annual) of Meningitis: approximately 25,000 cases of bacterial meningitis annually in USA; 206 annual cases in Victoria 1996 (DHS-VIC)
  Incidence Rate of Meningitis: approx 1 in 10,879 or 0.01% or 25,000 people in USA [about data]
How serious is Meningitis?
  Prognosis of Meningitis: Viral meningitis cases are usually self-limited to 10 days or less. Some types of meningitis can be deadly if not treated promptly. Anyone experiencing symptoms of meningitis or encephalitis should see a doctor immediately. 1 ... With early diagnosis and prompt treatment, most patients recover from meningitis. However, in some cases, the disease progresses so rapidly that death occurs during the first 48 hours, despite early treatment. 1
  Deaths for Meningitis: 850 deaths reported in USA 1999 (NVSR Sep 2001)
  Complications of Meningitis: see complications of Meningitis
What causes Meningitis?
  Causes of Meningitis: Meningitis may be caused by many different viruses and bacteria. 1 ... Streptococcus pneumoniae causes thousands of cases of meningitis and pneumonia, and 7 million cases of ear infection in the United States each year.2
  Class of Condition for Meningitis: viral, bacterial
  Causes of Meningitis: see causes of Meningitis
  Risk factors for Meningitis: see risk factors for Meningitis
What are the symptoms of Meningitis?
  Incubation period for Meningitis: symptoms can develop over several hours, or they may take 1 to 2 days.3
  Symptoms of Meningitis: see symptoms of Meningitis
Can anyone else get Meningitis?
  More information: see contagiousness of Meningitis
How is it treated?
  Treatments for Meningitis: see treatments for Meningitis
  Prevention of Meningitis: see prevention of Meningitis

1. excerpt from NINDS Encephalitis and Meningitis Information Page: NINDS
2. excerpt from Antimicrobial Resistance, NIAID Fact Sheet: NIAID
3. excerpt from Meningococcal Disease (General): DBMD

Last revision: June 2, 2003

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