Journal Article

Community-Acquired Recurrent Bacterial Meningitis in Adults

Kirsten S. Adriani, Diederik van de Beek, Matthijs C. Brouwer, Lodewijk Spanjaard and Jan de Gans

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 45, issue 5, pages e46-e51
Published in print September 2007 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online September 2007 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/520682
Community-Acquired Recurrent Bacterial Meningitis in Adults

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Background. Community-acquired recurrent bacterial meningitis in adults is a relatively rare disease. All previous data were derived from small retrospective case series.

Methods. We prospectively evaluated episodes of recurrent bacterial meningitis in a nationwide cohort study in The Netherlands.

Results. Thirty-four episodes of recurrent bacterial meningitis were identified among 31 patients; 3 patients experienced 2 episodes during the study period. The mean age was 43 years, and 25 (74%) of 34 episodes occurred in men. Predisposing conditions were involved in 26 (77%) of 34 episodes; the most common predisposing conditions were remote head injury (17 [53%] of 32 episodes) and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leakage (9 [32%] of 28 episodes). Lumbar puncture revealed an individual CSF indicator of bacterial meningitis for almost all episodes (88%). The outcome was death for 5 (15%) of 34 episodes; 1 additional patient had a suboptimal score on the Glasgow Outcome Scale.

Conclusion. We conclude that most patients with recurrent meningitis are male and have predisposing conditions, which, in most cases, are remote head injury or CSF leakage.

Journal Article.  3623 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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