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Ned Tijdschr Tandheelkd. 2012 May;119(5):238-42.

[Bacterial meningitis].

[Article in Dutch]

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Uit de afdeling Neurologie, Center of Infection and Immunity Amsterdam (CINIMA) van het Academisch Medisch Centrum in Amsterdam.


Bacterial meningitis is a severe disease which affects 35.000 Europeans each year and has a mortality rate of about 20%. During the past 25 years the epidemiology of bacterial meningitis has changed significantly due to the implementation of vaccination against Haemophilus influenzae, Neisseria meningtidis group C and Streptococcus pneumoniae. Due to these vaccines, meningitis is now predominantly a disease occurring in adults, caused especially by Streptococcus pneumoniae, while it was formerly a child disease which was largely caused by Haemophilus influenzae. Bacterial meningitis is often difficult to recognize since the classical presentation with neck stiffness, reduced awareness and fever occurs in less than half of the patients. The only way to diagnose or exclude bacterial meningitis is by performing low-threshold cerebrospinal fluid examination with a suspicion of bacterial meningitis. The treatment consists of the prescription of antibiotics and dexamethasone.

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