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April 1953

PNEUMOCOCCIC MENINGITIS: Study of One Hundred Two Cases

Author Affiliations


From the Department of Medicine and Division of Bacteriology, Department of Laboratories, Philadelphia General Hospital, and the Section of Infectious Diseases, the University of Pennsylvania.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1953;91(4):440-447. doi:10.1001/archinte.1953.00240160026003

CONSIDERATION of the literature dealing with the mortality associated with pneumococcic meningitis focuses attention on two points. First, there appears to be a marked divergence in mortality statistics as reported by different investigators, estimates ranging between 251 and 70%.2 Second, in spite of the recognized natural susceptibility of the Pneumococcus to penicillin, as evidenced by the sharp reduction in pneumococcic pneumonia mortality, 60 to 9%,3 when this therapeutic agent is used and the reported synergistic activity of penicillin and sulfonamides against this organism,4 the mortality associated with the Pneumococcus when it invades the meninges was, until recently, inordinately high. These considerations, together with a desire to compare our experience in the light of that of others, prompted us to make this study.

Our series embraces the clinical and autopsy records of 102 cases of pneumococcal meningitis seen at the Philadelphia General Hospital during the past decade. Of the total number

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