Bacterial meningitis is a type of meningitis serious enough to cause death and permanent damages. The bacteria that cause the condition enters the central nervous system and may also spread from the throat, nasal cavity, and middle ear. The bacteria that cause the condition are Neisseria meningitidis, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, and Streptococcus agalactiae. Bacterial meningitis pathogens can be transmitted through oral secretion such as saliva or when coughing. General symptoms for this condition include headache, fever, vomiting, confusion, nausea, sensitive to light, and stiff neck. Below are the types of bacterial meningitis:
Meningococcal Meningitis: This condition is caused by Neisseria meningitidis bacteria and it is a very serious infection. Sometimes, it can be fatal few hours after the symptoms start. Survivors tend to have nerve damages that are irreversible resulting in the loss of hearing, brain damage, or necrosis. The bacteria can move to the blood causing sepsis which leads to organ failure, septic shock, multiple blood clots, and death
Pneumococcal Meningitis: This type of meningitis is caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae bacteria. The bacteria are normally found at the back of the mouth and does not cause problems, but if a person is susceptible, the bacteria can cross the blood-brain barrier causing meningitis. Sometimes, the bacteria and its toxins cause blood poisoning or septicemia.
Haemophilus Influenzae Meningitis: This condition is caused by Haemophilus influenzae bacteria. These bacteria can be found in the throat and are the common cause of meningitis in children below 5 years old.
Neonatal Meningitis: This type of meningitis is caused by Streptococcus agalactiae bacteria and occurs in newborns up to 3 months of age. Sometimes, the bacteria can infect people with different age and can be found in the urinary and digestive tracts. Early stage symptoms include unstable temperature, apnea, slow heart rate, low blood pressure, high irritability, and weakness. Late stage symptoms include seizure, protruding fontanel, stiff neck, half-body paralysis, and backward arching of the head.
OpenStax Microbiology. Bacterial Diseases Of The Nervous System. Accessed November 11, 2019