Childhood Diseases

Question
Posted by: BMJ | 2011/10/26

Q.

Viral enchephalitis

Dear Doc

I learnt that my neighbour''s son has viral enchepelitis. He was admitted to hospital on Sunday. He plays at our house frequently and spent last friday with us, eating etc...

Is my children at risk of getting it too and if so what is the incubation period and first symptoms.

Thank you

Expert's Reply

A.

Paediatrician

There are several viruses that can cause a viral encephalitis in children.Probably the most well known of these viruses is the herpes virus. Encephalitis means an infection of the brain itself. Children are especially vulnerable to encephalitis although fortunately it is an uncommon infection. The incubation period is beteween 5 and 10 days.Headache is usually the first symptom, but drowsiness and vomiting are also common early symptoms.

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