Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Med Clin North Am. 2012 Nov;96(6):1107-26. doi: 10.1016/j.mcna.2012.08.002. Epub 2012 Sep 13.

Head and neck emergencies: bacterial meningitis, encephalitis, brain abscess, upper airway obstruction, and jugular septic thrombophlebitis.

Author information

  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, VA, USA.


Head and neck infectious disease emergencies can be rapidly fatal without prompt recognition and treatment. Empiric intravenous (IV) antibiotics should be initiated immediately in any patient with suspected bacterial meningitis, and IV acyclovir in any patient with suspected encephalitis. Surgical intervention is often necessary for brain abscesses, epiglottitis, and Ludwig's angina. A high index of suspicion is often needed to diagnose epiglottitis, Ludwig's angina, and Lemierre's syndrome. Brain infections can have high morbidity among survivors. In this article, the causes, diagnostic tests, treatment, and prognosis are reviewed for some of the more common head and neck infectious disease emergencies.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk