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Meningitis related rash appears as bloody spots that may be deep red or pink in color. It is accompanied with number of other symptoms. What is Meningitis?

Meningitis represents an inflammation of the membranes, known as meninges that cover the brain and the spinal cord. Meningitis is a very serious condition that requires prompt treatment because inflammation of the meninges can damage the nerves and the brain. It is caused by an infection created by bacteria or viruses and sometimes even fungi. Viral meningitis is the most common and less serious type of meningitis comparing to bacterial one.

Bacterial Meningitis

Meningitis caused by bacterial infection is rare but serious and life threatening condition. If it is not immediately treated, bacterial meningitis can lead to death within 24 hours of infection. Bacterial meningitis is commonly caused by one of three bacteria: Haemophilus influenzae type B, Streptococcus pneumoniae and Neisseria meningitides. The condition commonly causes high fever, headache and stiff neck. Rash usually also develops. Bacterial meningitis rash initially appears like red and purple spots and it is most prominent on the trunk and lower extremities. Overtime, the rash turns into area of skin damage and covers the whole body. Another characteristic of bacterial meningitis rash is that it doesn’t fade when pressed. Bacterial meningitis rash may indicate septicemia, which is blood poisoning caused by the same germ.

Since bacterial meningitis is very rare, it may be hard to identify it at first because the symptoms are similar to cold and flu. Bacterial meningitis can lead to different serious complications and pose a risk to life. Even after a recovery from the disease, a person may have recurring headaches, depression, epilepsy, fatigue, brain damage, deafness and learning disabilities. If the treatment is not provided immediately, seizures, mental impairment and paralysis may be life long. Bacterial meningitis can be prevented with vaccination.

Viral Meningitis

Viral meningitis is relatively common disease accompanied with milder symptoms. It is caused by enteroviruses that are normally found in the intestines. Viral meningitis most often affects children. Symptoms of viral meningitis are fever, headache, stiff neck, nausea, vomiting and tiredness. Infants may become irritable, lethargic and refuse to eat. Rigid or tender back can be seen in babies less than 18 months old. Rash is also caused by viral meningitis. The rash can be flat or raised in some areas and red in color. There are the no specific medications for treatment of viral meningitis but drugs may be given to relieve the symptoms. Bed rest and increased intake of fluids are part of the treatment as well. After the recovery, a person may temporarily experience muscle weakness, fatigue, headache, muscle spasms and difficulty to concentrate.

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