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Laura S. Freitas 1 Article
Nosocomial meningitis in intensive care: a 10-year retrospective study and literature review
Sofia R. Valdoleiros, Cristina Torrão, Laura S. Freitas, Diana Mano, Celina Gonçalves, Carla Teixeira
Acute Crit Care. 2022;37(1):61-70.   Published online January 26, 2022
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AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary Material
Nosocomial meningitis is a medical emergency that requires early diagnosis, prompt initiation of therapy, and frequent admission to the intensive care unit (ICU). Methods: A retrospective study was conducted in adult patients diagnosed with nosocomial meningitis who required admission to the ICU between April 2010 and March 2020. Meningitis/ventriculitis and intracranial infection were defined according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines. Results: An incidence of 0.75% of nosocomial meningitis was observed among 70 patients. The mean patient age was 59 years and 34% were ≥65 years. Twenty-two percent of patients were in an immunocompromised state. A clear predisposing factor for nosocomial meningitis (traumatic brain injury, basal skull fracture, brain hemorrhage, central nervous system [CNS] invasive procedure or device) was present in 93% of patients. Fever was the most frequent clinical feature. A microbiological agent was identified in 30% of cases, of which 27% were bacteria, with a predominance of Gram-negative over Gram-positive. Complications developed in 47% of cases, 24% of patients were discharged with a Glasgow coma scale <14, and 37% died. There were no clear clinical predictors of complications. Advanced age (≥65 years old) and the presence of complications were associated with higher hospital mortality. Conclusions: Nosocomial meningitis in critical care has a low incidence rate but high mortality and morbidity. In critical care patients with CNS-related risk factors, a high level of suspicion for meningitis is warranted, but diagnosis can be hindered by several confounding factors.


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ACC : Acute and Critical Care