Neonatal meningitis



Neonatal meningitis



Neonatal meningitis


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USMLE® Step 1 questions

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Neonatal meningitis

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USMLE® Step 1 style questions USMLE

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An 18-day-old boy is brought to the emergency department due to fever and irritability. The boy was healthy at birth; however, 2-days ago, he developed a fever and decreased appetite. In addition, the patient has become increasingly irritable. Blood testing reveals leukopenia and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis reveals low glucose concentration and elevated proteins. Gram culture of the blood and CSF is positive for Streptococcus agalactiae. Which of the following is true regarding this pathogen?  


Neonatal meningitis is a serious infection characterized by inflammation of the meninges in neonates, usually caused by bacteria or viruses that enter the body through the blood or the respiratory tract. Common culprits include Group B Streptococci, Escherichia coli, and Listeria monocytogenes.

Symptoms of neonatal meningitis include fever, poor appetite, anterior fontanelle bulging, seizure, and irritability. The infection can also cause a rash, seizures, and difficulty breathing. In severe cases, neonatal meningitis can lead to serious complications, such as brain damage, hearing loss, and death.

Treatment for neonatal meningitis typically involves medications like antibiotics to kill the invading pathogens and manage symptoms, and supportive care, such as intravenous fluids and medications to control seizures.


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