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October 1982

Ischemic Cerebrovascular Complications of Haemophilus influenzae Meningitis: The Value of Computed Tomography

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Neurology (Drs Dunn, Weisberg, and Vargas) and Pediatrics (Drs Dunn and Daum), Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans.

Arch Neurol. 1982;39(10):650-652. doi:10.1001/archneur.1982.00510220048011

• In an effort to define the value of computed tomographic (CT) scanning in assessment of cerebral involvement in children with severe Haemophilus influenzae meningitis, we studied 12 children who had focal neurologic deficits on admission or within the early days of illness. The CT scan reliably excluded abscess and cerebritis and suggested ischemic cerebrovascular lesions in 11 of 12 children. Scans performed early in the hospital course generally showed low-density lesions occurring in a vascular distribution without detectable mass effect or enhancement. Later in the clinical course there was consistent enhancement of gray matter or diffuse enhancement in the area of the vascular lesion. The duration of symptoms of meningitis ranged from five to 21 days (mean, 13 days) and appeared to predispose to these vascular lesions. A CT scan consistent with infarction of brain parenchyma occurred predictably in patients with persistent focal neurologic deficits and was correlated with poor outcome.

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