Some facts about
encephalitis are listed below-
‘Light your house red on 22nd February 2017, the World Encephalitis Day 2017 - #RED4WED’
- Encephalitis refers to inflammation
of the brain that occurs as a result of an infection or an autoimmune
- Infective encephalitis is often caused by
viruses including enteroviruses, herpes simplex virus types 1 and 2,
rabies virus, or arboviruses (viruses that are spread through mosquitoes,
ticks and other arthropods). Arboviral encephalitis includes West Nile,
Japanese, La Crosse, and St. Louis encephalitis. The Zika virus which has affected
several children in South America in recent years has also been implicated
as a cause of encephalitis in a few cases. Encephalitis may also be caused
by bacteria, fungi, or parasites
- Spread of encephalitis can occur through
several ways like through mosquito or tick bites or direct contact with
secretions of an infected patient
- Encephalitis can affect individuals of any
age - be it young children or adults or seniors. People with reduced
immunity can suffer from serious consequences
should be recognized early so that treatment can be started immediately
and complications can be prevented. The symptoms and
signs of encephalitis include high fever, and nervous system-related
symptoms of neck stiffness, vomiting, confusion, seizures, inability to
speak or move, and even coma. Analysis of the cerebrospinal fluid that
surrounds the brain and the spinal cord, and brain scans like CT scan and
MRI help to diagnose the condition
- Any condition that affects the brain is
concerning. So also is encephalitis, which can have serious consequences.
It can result in death or even disable the patient permanently though the
patient with milder infection can recover completely. Long-term complications
can include epilepsy, and memory, learning or personality problems.
Adequate precautions should also be taken by people in close contact with
the patient to prevent infection
- Some patients may relapse in case of
incomplete treatment. Some forms of autoimmune encephalitis may also
relapse, indicating the importance of following up the patient.
- Unfortunately, several people die due to
encephalitis. Therefore, prevention is still a better option to treatment.
Vaccines like meningococcal
vaccine can prevent several forms of encephalitis and save
several lives. Mosquito and tick bites should be avoided
organizers of the World Encephalitis Day 2017 encourage individuals to wear
#RED4WED T-shirts to mark the day.
- Rehabilitation of the patient is an
important aspect following treatment. Since encephalitis can affect brain
functions, it is necessary that the patient is helped to cope up with
daily life in the long term through rehabilitation.
Several landmarks including the
fountains at Trafalgar Square, London, Blackpool Tower and the Peace Bridge
linking Canada and the U.S.A. will be lit red on the day to increase awareness
of the encephalitis.
What is Encephalitis? - (https://www.worldencephalitisday.org/)
- Meningitis and Encephalitis Fact Sheet -