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Viral Meningitis

Viral infection is the commonest cause of meningitis.


1. Enterovirus (Echovirus,Coxsackei,Poliovirus).
2. Arbovirus (e.g.yellow fever,sand fly fever).
3. Herpes simplex virus.
4. Mumps virus,Influenza virus.

Clinical features of Viral meningitis:

A) Acute onset of headache.
B) Irritability and rapid development of meningeal irritation with-highpyrexia (revert to normal in 5-7 days)
C) But focal neurological signs are uncommon.


1. CSF examination (See table)


Treatment must be started without waiting for confirmation(culture report).
1. There is no specific treatment,usually benign & self-limiting.
2. Symptomatic treatment in a quiet environment.
3. Recovery usually occurs within days.

Table:CSF findings in different meningitis.

Colour Clear
Pressure Normal
Cell count/cmm Lymphocytes 10-2000
Glucose Normal
Protein Normal/increase
Chloride Normal

Complications of meningitis:

* Abscess-Epidural,Subdural,Brain.
* Causing obstructive hydrocephalus.
* Development of cranial nerve palsy.
* Epilepsy,Mental deficit.
Acute renal failure.
* Development of water-house.
* Friedrickson's syndrome in meningitis.
Reference:Davidson's Principles and Practice of medicine,21st edition,page:1209-1210.

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