Fungal MeningitisFungal meningitis, also known as Cryptococcus neoformans, is yeast found in soil throughout the world that usually strikes people with compromised immune systems.
Fungal meningitis is contracted by inhaling airborne yeast cells. The infection is uncommon and not easily spread to others, but serious and requires immediate medical attention. In the United States, 85% of the cases occur in HIV positive patients. Fungal meningitis patients who receive treatment are still at risk of death, brain damage, hearing loss, learning disabilities, speech complications, seizures, and paralysis.
There is no current vaccine available to prevent anyone from developing fungal meningitis.
- Fever (below normal)
- Stiff neck
- Sensitive to light
MFA urges anyone with these symptoms to seek medical attention immediately!
All types of meningitis are diagnosed by growing bacteria from a sample of the infected person's spinal fluid, which is collected by performing a lumbar puncture (spinal tap). Results show whether or not the cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) stains show yeast, culture grows cryptococcus, or it's positive for cryptococcus antigen. A blood test, also known as the serum cryptococcal antigen test, can be sensative to HIV positive patients.
Amphotericin B, an intravenous therapy, is the most common treatment for patients with fungal meningitis. Intrathecal medication is given to patients through the spinal cord who don't respond positively to intravenous therapy. Antifungal medications are also used for treatment. Fluconalzone, an oral medication, may be effective in high doses.