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September 13, 1976

Gram-Negative Bacillary Meningitis Therapy: Polyradiculitis Following Intralumbar Aminoglycoside Administration

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine, divisions of endocrinology (Dr Hollifield) and infectious disease (Drs Kaiser and McGee), Vanderbilt University Hospital, Nashville, Tenn, and the Division of Infectious Disease, St Thomas Hospital, Nashville, Tenn (Dr Kaiser).

JAMA. 1976;236(11):1264-1266. doi:10.1001/jama.1976.03270120040023

Gram-negative bacillary meningitis is a serious threat to patients with head trauma or altered immune systems, or those who have had neurosurgical procedures. The aminoglycoside antibiotics administered systemically and into the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) have proved useful in the treatment of these infections. Intralumbar and parenteral gentamicin sulfate and tobramycin sulfate were administered to an acromegalic woman with Klebsiella meningitis. She had objective evidence of an adhesive arachnoiditis and symptoms of polyradiculitis. Cessation of the aminoglycoside administration resulted in symptomatic improvement, and reinstitution of therapy caused a recurrence of neurologic symptoms. Polyradiculitis may be a complication of the intralumbar administration of aminoglycosides.

(JAMA 236:1264-1266, 1976)