Case Study CNS Infection (Me

Case Study
CNS Infection



This case presentation aims to identify and determine the general health problems and needs of the patient with an admitting diagnosis of Stroke in the Young. This presentation also intends to help patient promote health and medical understanding of such condition through the application of the nursing skills.

* To raise the level of awareness of patient on health problems that he may encounter.
* To facilitate patient in taking necessary actions to solve and prevent the identified problems on his own.
* To help patient in motivating him to continue the health care provided by the health workers.
* To render nursing care and information to patient through the application of the nursing skills.
A stroke occurs when the blood supply to the part of the brain is suddenly interrupted (ischemic) or when a blood vessel in the brain bursts, spilling blood into the spaces surrounding the brain cells (hemorrhagic).

The symptoms of stroke can be: sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body; sudden confusion or trouble speaking or understanding speech; sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes; sudden trouble walking; dizziness; or loss of balance or coordination. Brain cells die when they no longer receive oxygen and nutrients from the blood or when they are damaged by sudden bleeding into or around the brain. These damaged cells can linger in a compromised state for several hours. With timely treatment, these cells can be saved.

Many children who have strokes experience them from unknown causes. There are some known causes of Childhood Stroke; they include the following things.

* Brain Infections – like Encephalitis is an inflammation of the brain and Meningitis which is an infection of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord.
* Arteriovenous malformation (AVM) – An arteriovenous malformation (AVM) is a congenital disorder characterized by a complex, tangled web of arteries and veins.
* Birth Injury – Events during the time of birth that can damage the developing brain.
* Congenital Heart Disease (CHD)
* Disseminated intravascular coagulation – when the blood clotting mechanisms are activated throughout the body instead of being localized to an area of injury.
* Drug Use – All of the disorders producing stroke in toddlers and school-aged children may still produce stroke in adolescents. However, an increasing percentage of strokes, of both ischemic and hemorrhagic types, occur in relation to drug use. The most common drug causing stroke is cocaine in its smoked form (crack). Smoked amphetamines (meth, ice, etc.). Any type of illicit drug injected into the bloodstream can produce stroke.
* Embolus -A blood clot that has formed at the site of blockage or that has formed somewhere “upstream” in the arterial tree, has broken off, and been carried “downstream” in the blood flow through progressively smaller branches in the arterial tree, until it enters a vessel too small to fit through, plugging it closed. An Embolus often forms within the heart or one of the larger arteries leading away from it, then breaks off and travels to the brain or another organ.
* Infection – Chicken Pox in extreme cases can be one cause of pediatric stroke.
* Polycythemia – An overproduction of blood cells, which can cause “thickening” of blood, increasing its viscosity and its clotting tendency.
* Prematurity – Preterm or “premature” birth is when your baby is born three weeks or more before it’s due date.

But among the causes given above, the most significant cause which we will focus is on Meningitis which our patient has manifested and was attested through our Pt’s MRI result.

Meningitis is a serious inflammation of the meninges, the membranes (lining) that surround the brain and spinal cord. It can be of bacterial, viral, or fungal origin. Viral meningitis, also called aseptic meningitis, is generally less severe and usually self-limited to 10 days or less, while bacterial meningitis can be quite serious and may result in brain damage, hearing loss, or learning disabilities in children. The infection may even cause death.

The bacteria which cause bacterial meningitis live in the back of the nose and throat region and are carried by 10 to 25 percent of the population. They cause meningitis when they get into the bloodstream and travel to the meninges. At least 50 kinds of bacteria can cause bacterial meningitis. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), before the 1990s, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) was the leading cause of bacterial meningitis, but subsequent vaccines given to all children as part of their routine immunizations have reduced the occurrence of the disease due to H. influenzae. As of 2004, Streptococcus pneumoniae and Neisseria meningitidis were the leading causes of bacterial meningitis.

In newborns, the most common agents of meningitis are those that are contracted from the newborn’s mother, including Group B streptococci (becoming an increasingly common infecting organism in the newborn period), Escherichia coli, and Listeria monocytogenes. The highest incidence of meningitis occurs in babies less than a month old, with an increased risk of meningitis continuing through about two years of age. Older children are more frequently infected by the bacteria Haemophilus influenzae, Neisseria meningitidis, and Streptococci pneumoniae.

Most cases of viral meningitis are caused by enteroviruses (viruses that typically cause stomach flu). However, many other types of viruses, such as the herpes simplex virus, the mumps and measles viruses (against which most children are protected due to mass immunization programs), the virus that causes chickenpox, the rabies virus, and a number of viruses that are acquired through the bites of infected mosquitoes.

Meningitis symptoms include high fever, headache, and stiff neck in children over the age of two years. These symptoms can develop over several hours, or they may take one to two days. Other symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, discomfort looking into bright lights, confusion, and sleepiness. In some cases, a rash may be present. In newborns and small infants, these symptoms may be absent or difficult to detect, and the infant may only appear slow or inactive, or be irritable, have vomiting, or be feeding poorly. As the disease progresses, patients of any age may also have seizures.

Present Health History

The present health history started 2 weeks ago prior to admission. The patient had a sudden onset of severe headache; no medication and consultation to the doctor was done. The following day, she had fever with maximum of 38.5°C and by afternoon she felt numbness and weakness in his left upper extremity that led the parents of the patient bring him to the hospital. She was admitted at East Avenue Medical Center.
Past Health History
Prior to her hospitalization at East Avenue Medical Center, her parents denied in having any record or medical history of being admitted due to trauma, accident and disease. They also confirmed that our patient has no allergies to food and drugs.
Family Health History
No hereditary disease can be attributed from her mother side, but her father had a family health history of hypertension. Other than the latter, no other hereditary disease from both of her parents are within the patient’s parents knowledge.


Civil Status
Educational Attainment

Occupation #36D M.A
Baler, Quezon City
35years old
Roman Catholic
AMA College

* –
* –
Physical Assessment & General Appearance

Level of Consciousness

Body Build

Posture & Gait

Overall hygiene & Grooming

40 kg



slightly erect posture

Weak looking



Scalp/ Hair
Eyes/ Vision

? palpation

? inspection
? palpation

? inspection
? inspection
? palpation

? proportional to
the size of the body,
round, with prominences in the
frontal area anteriorly & the occipital area
posteriorly, symmetrical in all planes, gently

? scalp is white,
clean, free from
masses, lumps, nits,
dandruff & lesions,
with no areas of
tenderness upon
palpation; hair is black, evenly distributed & covers the whole scalp & thick.

? oblong shaped,
symmetrical, smooth
& no involuntary
muscle movements

? eyes are parallel
& evenly placed,
symmetrical, non-protruding, with scant amount of secretions, both eyes black & clear;
sclera is white &

? eyebrows are black, symmetrical, thick, can raise both symmetrically & with difficulty

? eyelashes are evenly
distributed & turned
outward; upper
eyelids cover a small portion of the iris, cornea & the sclera when the eyes are open, when the eyes

? Normal

? Normal
? Normal
? Normal
? Abnormal
? Normal
completely, symmetrical & the color is the same as the surrounding
skin; lid margins are clear, without scaling or secretions; lower palpebral conjunctiva are shiny, moist, transparent & pink in color; iris are proportional to the size of the eye, round &
symmetrical; pupils
are from pinpoint to
almost the size of the iris, round, symmetrical,
constricts with
increasing light &
able to move eyes in
full range of direction
Ears/ Hearing


Mouth/ Lips
? inspection
? palpation
? inspection
? palpation
? inspection
? palpation
? ears are parallel,
proportional to the
size of the head,
bean-shaped, helix
is in line with the
outer canthus of the
eye, skin is the
same color as the
surrounding area &
clean; ear canal is
pinkish, clean, with
scant amount of
cerumen & a few
cilia; able to hear whisper spoken 1
feet away

? nose is in midline,
symmetrical, patent;
internal nares are
clean, dark pink with
few cilia

? lips are pale and dry,
symmetrical, lip margin is well defined, gums are slight pinkish, ? Normal

? Normal

? Abnormal
? inspection
? palpation

? inspection
? palpation
? percussion
? auscultation
moist, no swelling,
no retraction, no

? tongue is pale, slightly rough on top & with difficulty in moving

?cheeks are pale,
moist & smooth;

? proportional to
the size of the body
& head, symmetrical
& straight, no palpable lumps, masses or areas of tenderness

? chest contour is
symmetrical, spine is
straight, no lumps, no masses, no tender areas, with clear breath sounds

? Abnormal

? Abnormal
? Normal
? Normal

EXTREMITIES ? inspection
? palpation
? percussion
? auscultation
? inspection
? auscultation
? percussion
? palpation

? inspection
? palpation ? no abnormal pulsations & visible in
apical area

? abdominal skin is unblemished, no scars, color is uniform with the
body color, abdomen is
rounded with symmetric
movements caused
by respiration; umbilicus is concave.

? symmetrical, with
visible veins, fine hair evenly distributed, warm, dry & elastic upon palpation, with area of tenderness on the left arm; nails are
transparent, smooth
& convex with light
Pale nail beds & white translucent tips; ? Normal

? Normal
? Normal



? inspection
? palpation
? right shoulders, arms,
elbows, hands & wrists can be moved with difficulty

? skin is smooth,
fine hair is evenly
distributed, absence
of varicose veins,
muscles symmetrical, length symmetrical, 5 toes in each foot & sole

?dorsal surface is pale, nail beds with pale tips
both legs, knees,

? left toes can be
be moved in different range of motion with relative ease while the right toes have difficulty in movement
? Abnormal
? Normal

? Abnormal
? Abnormal

Patient used to be very active and sports minded prior to hospitalization. He is a member of their school basketball varsity player and is fond of interacting with other people. His parents consider him very friendly to everybody as he is liked by everyone. He does not have any vices like smoking and drinking as to the knowledge of his parents.

Rest & Activity
A typical day to her would be waking up at around 5:30 am, get ready for her work, eat breakfast and leave the house. She comes home in the afternoon, take a bath then goes to the barangay to join her friends., then join her family for dinner or watch television with her siblings. She normally sleeps 11-12midnight.

She usually stays home during weekends except when she is invited by friends to go out.

According to her parents, before the onset of her sickness, she had no difficulty in breathing and ventilation.

According to her parents, she eats moderately. sHe eats everything, from fish, meat products and vegetables. The patient drinks only soda and water as refreshment.

Meningitis and encephalitis are usually caused by viruses or bacteria. Most often, the body’s immune system is able to contain and defeat an infection. But if the infection passes into the blood stream and then into the cerebrospinal fluid that surrounds the brain and spinal cord, it can affect the nerves and travel to the brain and/or surrounding membranes, causing inflammation. This swelling can harm or destroy nerve cells and cause bleeding in the brain.
The meninges comprise three membranes that, together with the cerebrospinal fluid, enclose and protect the brain and spinal cord (the central nervous system). The pia mater is a very delicate impermeable membrane that firmly adheres to the surface of the brain, following all the minor contours. The arachnoid mater (so named because of its spider-web-like appearance) is a loosely fitting sac on top of the pia mater. The subarachnoid space separates the arachnoid and pia mater membranes, and is filled with cerebrospinal fluid. The outermost membrane, the dura mater, is a thick durable membrane, which is attached to both the arachnoid membrane and the skull.

In bacterial meningitis, bacteria reach the meninges by one of two main routes: through the bloodstream or through direct contact between the meninges and either the nasal cavity or the skin. In most cases, meningitis follows invasion of the bloodstream by organisms that live upon mucous surfaces such as the nasal cavity. This is often in turn preceded by viral infections, which break down the normal barrier provided by the mucous surfaces. Once bacteria have entered the bloodstream, they enter the subarachnoid space in places where the blood-brain barrier is vulnerable-such as the choroid plexus. Meningitis occurs in 25% of newborns with bloodstream infections due to group B streptococci; this phenomenon is less common in adults. Direct contamination of the cerebrospinal fluid may arise from indwelling devices, skull fractures, or infections of the nasopharynx or the nasal sinuses that have formed a tract with the subarachnoid space (see above); occasionally, congenital defects of the dura mater can be identified.

The large-scale inflammation that occurs in the subarachnoid space during meningitis is not a direct result of bacterial infection but can rather largely be attributed to the response of the immune system to the entrance of bacteria into the central nervous system. When components of the bacterial cell membrane are identified by the immune cells of the brain (astrocytes and microglia), they respond by releasing large amounts of cytokines, hormone-like mediators that recruit other immune cells and stimulate other tissues to participate in an immune response. The blood-brain barrier becomes more permeable, leading to “vasogenic” cerebral edema (swelling of the brain due to fluid leakage from blood vessels). Large numbers of white blood cells enter the CSF, causing inflammation of the meninges, and leading to “interstitial” edema (swelling due to fluid between the cells). In addition, the walls of the blood vessels themselves become inflamed (cerebral vasculitis), which leads to a decreased blood flow and a third type of edema, “cytotoxic” edema. The three forms of cerebral edema all lead to an increased intracranial pressure; together with the lowered blood pressure often encountered in acute infection, this means that it is harder for blood to enter the brain, and brain cells are deprived of oxygen and undergo apoptosis (automated cell death).
It is recognized that administration of antibiotics may initially worsen the process outlined above, by increasing the amount of bacterial cell membrane products released through the destruction of bacteria. Particular treatments, such as the use of corticosteroids, are aimed at dampening the immune system’s response to this phenomenon.
Nasopharyngeal Colonization

Bacterial Components
Endothelial Cells CNS-macropage

IL-1 Endothelium-leucocycle TNF and IL-1


Increased BBB Thrombosis
Vasogenic Edema Increased ICP Decreased Cerebral
Blood Flow
Increased CSF phogocytosis Oxygen Depletion
CSF protein


Decreased Increased
CSF Glucose CSF Lactose
CSF outflow Interstitial
Resistant Edema
In someone suspected of having meningitis:

* BLOOD TESTS are performed for markers of inflammation (e.g. C-reactive protein, complete blood count), as well as blood cultures.
* LUMBAR PUNCTURE is the most important test in identifying or ruling out meningitis. The analysis of the cerebrospinal fluid through lumbar puncture (LP, spinal tap).
* CT or MRI scans are performed at a later stage to assess for complications of meningitis.
* MONITORING OF BLOOD ELECTROLYTES . In severe forms of meningitis, monitoring of blood electrolytes may be important; for example, hyponatremia is common in bacterial meningitis, due to a combination of factors including dehydration, the inappropriate excretion of the antidiuretic hormone (SIADH), or overly aggressive intravenous fluid administration.

Gram stain of meningococci from a culture showing Gram negative (pink) bacteria, often in pairs

Meningitis can be diagnosed after death has occurred. The findings from a post mortem are usually a widespread inflammation of the pia mater and arachnoid layers of the meninges covering the brain and spinal cord. Neutrophil granulocytes tend to have migrated to the cerebrospinal fluid and the base of the brain, along with cranial nerves and the spinal cord, may be surrounded with pus-as may the meningeal vessels.

Specific treatment for meningitis will be determined by your physician based on:
* your age, overall health, and medical history
* extent of the disease
* the organism that is causing the infection
* your tolerance for specific medications, procedures, or therapies
* expectations for the course of the disease

Treatment may include:
* Bacterial Meningitis
Treatment for bacterial meningitis usually involves intravenous (IV) antibiotics. The earlier the treatment is initiated, the better the outcome.

While steroid administration has been shown to be helpful in treating bacterial meningitis in infants and children, this treatment is used less frequently in adults. Dexamethasone, a type of steroid, may be given in more acute cases of bacterial meningitis, to decrease the inflammatory response caused by the bacteria.

* Viral Meningitis
Treatment for viral meningitis is usually supportive (aimed at relieving symptoms). With the exception of the herpes simplex virus, there are no specific medications to treat the organisms that cause viral meningitis.

Supportive Therapy for meningitis

While a person is recovering from meningitis, other therapies may be initiated to improve healing and comfort, and provide relief from symptoms. These may include the following:
* bed rest
* medications (to reduce fever and headache)

In addition, supplemental oxygen or mechanical ventilation (respirator) may be required if you become very ill and have difficulty breathing.

Prevention of meningitis:

Several vaccines are currently available to prevent some of the bacterial organisms that can cause meningitis. However, routine vaccination with these vaccines is recommended primarily for infants and children.

In certain conditions, your physician may recommend one of the meningitis vaccines. These conditions may include, but are not limited to, the following:
* chronic lung conditions, such as emphysema or COPD
* heart disease
* diabetes
* chronic renal (kidney) failure
* travel to countries where meningitis is prevalent
* decreased immunity status
* certain blood disorders
M – edication
Always take your medicine as directed by your physician. Do not use any medicines, over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, herbs, or food supplements without first talking to your physician. Do not also quit taking your medicines unless ordered.
E – conomic
The use of non- pharmacotherapy such as drinking plenty of water and proper hygiene to promote cleanliness thus eliminating infection.
T – reatment
The patient has to undergo therapy both physical and occupational to mobilize affected parts and be able to do his activities of daily living and start his life back again.
H – ygiene
Advise to follow proper body hygiene and to maintain cleanliness on surroundings.
O – ut Patient/ Follow-up
Any odd signs such as fever, headache or stiff neck, confused or hard to wake up, seizure (convulsion) or if your symptoms are getting worse or returning, must be immediately reported to the physician.
D – iet
Instruct to eat foods that are low fat, low fiber, non-irritating and non-carbonated.
The patient in this study had undergone supportive and symptomatic management. He was admitted last July 10 and was transferred from PICU then OBS Ward to the Neuro Pedia Ward last July 16 onwards.
Good nursing care is fundamental in maintaining skin care, feeding, hydration, positioning, and monitoring vital signs such as temperature, pulse, and blood pressure were done to promote comfort and repression of symptoms. Hygiene was also strictly implemented to avoid risk for further infection. Nursing assistance was also given to help him in his activities of daily living.
Physical therapy (PT) and occupational therapy (OT) are the cornerstones of the rehabilitation process. PT involves re-learning functions as transferring, walking and other gross motor functions. OT focusses on exercises and training to help relearn everyday activities known as the Activities of daily living (ADLs) such as eating, drinking, dressing, bathing, cooking, reading and writing, and toileting. Speech and language therapy is appropriate for patients with problems understanding speech or written words, problems forming speech and problems with eating (swallowing).
Health teaching is a very important role on the part of the nurses. This is of great significance to the knowledge deficit of patients regarding health and illness.
Strict compliance to the medical treatment, health teachings and medical check-up is advised. With proper nutrition and conformity to the medications & therapy, recovery would be easier and faster. Rehabilitation should begin immediately.