Meningitis in Adults (cont.)
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What Is the Treatment for Meningitis in Adults?
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Hospitalization for meningitis depends on the cause.
If you appear to have viral meningitis, treatment is usually less aggressive and consists of measures to make you more comfortable. Viral meningitis is often treated at home with acetaminophen (Tylenol) and other pain medications. Antibiotics are not helpful in treating viral meningitis.
If you have bacterial or fungal meningitis, you are often admitted to the intensive-care unit, for either a short period of observation or a longer period if you are more ill. Care of bacterial meningitis begins by ensuring that your breathing and blood pressure are adequate.
Steroids may be given to try to decrease the severity of the disease.
If the diagnosis is uncertain, or if you have recently been on antibiotics, you may be admitted to the hospital for observation and treatment until the diagnosis is certain. This may require another spinal tap in 12-24 hours for reevaluation.
How Do People Transmit Meningitis?
Bacterial and viral meningitis can be spread to others, however both viral and bacterial meningitis are not as contagious as colds or the flu.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/25/2017
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