An inflammation of the membranes that surround the brain or the spinal cord, either viral or bacterial.


  • Drowsiness
  • Fever
  • Vomiting
  • Restlessness
  • Crying
  • Severe headache
  • Sensitivity to bright light or loud noises
  • Rigid muscles, especially of the neck
  • Bacterial meningitis may develop into increasing drowsiness, convulsions or loss of consciousness.
  • There may be flat pink or purple spots on the skin that don't fade when you press on them. 


  • Viral meningitis can be mild, but bacterial meningitis is life threatening.
  • Take your child to a doctor or hospital immediately if you suspect meningitis for diagnosis and treatment.


  • A course of high-dose antibiotics will be started even before doctors know whether the meningitis is caused by a virus or bacterium.
  • Diagnosis is done via a lumbar puncture, where a hollow needle is inserted into the spine to draw spinal fluid from the spinal canal.
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