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Question
Posted by: gummy | 2004/01/25

meningitis

could you please tell me more about the symptons of the above as we had my oldest son at the doctor yesterday and they told us that it is a possibility. he have severe headaches, can't put his chin on his chest and his back is also stiff. he also start complaining about getting warm?

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Our expert says:
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Gummy, the following symptoms of meningitis (and septicaemia) may occur in adults and older children over the age of two years:
Common symptoms:
1. High fever and chills
2. Severe headache
3. Stiff neck (unable to touch chin to chest)
These symptoms can develop over several hours, or they may take one to two days. Meningitis can resemble a bad case of the flu.
Other symptoms may include:
1. Nausea
2. Vomiting
3. Diarrhoea
4. Discomfort looking into bright lights
5. Drowsiness
6. Pain in arms, legs and abdomen
7. Confusion or disorientation, delirium (delusions or hallucinations)
8. Reddish-purple, patchy rash which turns white if pressure is applied to the area
In newborns and infants:
1. Fever with cool hands and feet
2. Feeding poorly or refusing feeds
3. Vomiting
4. High-pitched moaning cry
5. Dislike of being handled, irritable
6. Neck retraction with arching of back
7. Blank staring expression
8. Difficult to wake, lethargic, slow reactions
9. Pale blotchy complexion
10. Rash
Not everyone gets all of the above symptoms, and the classic symptoms of fever, headache, and neck stiffness may be absent or difficult to detect in infants, children and the elderly. As the disease progresses, patients of any age may have seizures, and coma may occur in severe cases.
The rash is usually a late symptom, and indicates septicaemia. It starts as tiny red or brownish blood spots, which look like pin-pricks, and develops into purple bruises or blood blisters. This rash is caused by bleeding under the skin, as a result of breakdown of the blood vessel walls.
Good luck and let me know if you have more questions.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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