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Encephalitis, Viral

Forest W. Arnold, MSc, DO Reviewed 06/2022
 


BASICS

DESCRIPTION

  • Inflammation of the meninges (meningitis) and brain (encephalitis) associated with clinical evidence of neurologic dysfunction

  • System(s) affected: nervous

  • Synonym(s): meningoencephalit...

DIAGNOSIS

  • Major and minor diagnostic criteria have been proposed for probable and confirmed encephalitis of infectious or autoimmune etiology.

  • Assess risk factors in all cases of encephalitis.

  • Consider ...

TREATMENT

  • Many patients require intensive care.

  • In general, empiric therapy with acyclovir (dose below) is appropriate in cases of suspected encephalitis while awaiting formal diagnosis (1)[A].

  • Combine...

ONGOING CARE

FOLLOW-UP RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Postencephalitis sequelae are primarily neurologic. Guide follow-up accordingly (e.g., anticonvulsants for seizures).

  • Physical therapy may be necessary.

PATIENT EDUCATION

REFERENCES

1
Tunkel  AR, Glaser  CA, Bloch  KC, et al. The management of encephalitis: clinical practice guidelines by the Infectious Diseases Society of America. Clin Infect Di...

ADDITIONAL READING

  • Autore G, Bernardi L, Perrone S, et al. Update on viral infections involving the central nervous system in pediatric patients. Children (Basel). 2021;8(9):782. ...

CODES

ICD10

  • A86 Unspecified viral encephalitis

  • A85.2 Arthropod-borne viral encephalitis, unspecified

  • A84.9 Tick-borne viral encephalitis, unspecified

  • A83.9 Mosquito-borne viral encephalitis, unspecified

SNOMED

CLINICAL PEARLS

  • Patients with suspected encephalitis should have MRI and CSF analysis (using PCR) unless otherwise contraindicated.

  • Preventive measures include protective clothing, vector control, and ...

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