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Meningitis and septicaemia

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May 9th 2018

Didn't know bacteria and viral meningitis difference until my baby's diagnosis'

To mark Viral Meningitis Awareness Week, led by the charity Meningitis Now, Rory Palmer MEP writes about his own family’s experience with the disease...

Viral meningitis is an infection that causes inflammation of the membrane surrounding the brain and spinal cord. This can be a serious illness with long lasting effects for adults but can also be extremely perilous for babies and young children.

In January of this year, our three week old daughter Ellie was uncomfortable and irritable one evening. Any parent will tell you this is not uncommon; new babies will all have periods of grouchiness, unexplained tears and irritability (more often than not in the middle of the night when parents are craving much-needed sleep). On this particular evening our baby girl wouldn’t settle at all - even though she was still very new to us, we knew something wasn’t right.

The thermometer verified our instinct showing a high temperature at just over 38 degrees. Her temperature continued to rise and our worries and anxiety did likewise. We called the NHS 111 service who ran through their routine algorithm of diagnostic questions. Meningitis had crossed our minds and we had - like all parents do in these situations - checked for rashes, the tell-tale symptom that most people associate with meningitis. There was no rash so we waited for the call back from an out of hours GP.

The GP instructed us to head straight to A&E. It was the middle of the night and our baby was quickly subjected to a range of tests, including a lumbar puncture procedure, which was extremely painful and distressing for such a tiny baby and us as parents. The doctors explained that based on the symptoms they were testing for meningitis. These are words that will strike a dumbfounding fear into parents.

A few hours later, the initial test results confirmed that she had meningitis but it would take another 72 hours for blood culture tests to determine whether it was bacterial or viral. In the meantime, she was treated as if she had bacterial meningitis as a precaution. This meant being given intravenous antibiotics 

Sept 5th 2017

Time flies but a gentle reminder is always good

I don''t know enough about this subject but I know A man that does


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