Bacterial Encephalitis & Meningitis
What is it?
Encephalitis is an inflammation of the brain. Meningitis is an illness that causes swelling in the tissues that cover the brain and spinal cord. Both can be caused by an infection with bacteria or viruses.
Bacterial encephalitis and meningitis are serious infections that can lead to brain damage or death. They are caused by one or more types of bacteria, such as meningococcus. Encephalitis or meningitis caused by meningococcus is called meningococcal disease.
Bacterial encephalitis and meningitis are sometimes confused with the less serious viral encephalitis and meningitis. Viral encephalitis and meningitis rarely causes death in people who are otherwise healthy.