Dr Ira Shah
Editor - Pediatric Oncall
What is brain abscess?
Pus in the brain is called as brain abscess.
What are the causes of brain abscess?
Abscess can occur in any person. However there are certain predisposing factors that can make a person susceptible to brain abscess such as fracture of the skull bones, middle ear infections, sinusitis, hole in the heart or patients with low immunity. Brain abscess can also occur in patients with meningitis (infection of the brain).
Which are the germs causing brain abscess?
Common germs causing brain abscess are streptococcus, staphylococcus, pneumococcus and bacteroides. Rarely fungal and other bacteria can cause brain abscess.
What are the symptoms of brain abscess?
Symptoms of brain abscess are fever, loss of appetite, headache and vomiting. Other symptoms that can occur are neck pain, stroke, fits or coma.
How is the diagnosis of brain abscess made?
CT brain or MRI brain is the diagnosis modality through which brain abscess is diagnosed. It reveals a pus filled cavity in the brain. Your doctor will also order blood tests and an echocardiography to look for associated heart disease. Sometimes fluid from brain cavity (cerebrospinal fluid) may be sent for testing to look for associated meningitis.
What is the treatment of brain abscess?
Antibiotics for 4-6 weeks are required to treat brain abscess. In case brain abscess does not respond to antibiotics or is very large or is causing excessive pressure in the brain, then it may have to be surgically removed and pus drained.
Last updated on 1-09-2010