Psychiatric Disabilities and Other Long-term Consequences of
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Bacterial meningitis is known to cause hearing impairments and neurologic deficits; however, less is known regarding psychiatric disabilities. In this study, researchers assessed psychiatric disabilities and other long-term consequences of childhood bacterial meningitis.

From a previously validated dataset, children having bacterial meningitis were selected. Researchers reviewed medical records and child health records from discharge onwards to identify disabilities. The occurrence of disabilities with a 95% confidence interval (CI) was calculated , and a X2 test was used to assess possible individual risk factors associated with occurrence of disabilities.

Results:
Of the 80 children included in this study,
--permanent disabilities not attributed to preexisting diseases were noted in 56% during the mean observation period of 19 years and 2 months.
--Psychiatric disease was diagnosed in 30%, and another 5% were under ongoing investigations for symptoms of psychiatric disease.
--Hearing impairments affected at least 30%, and neurologic deficits affected at least 23%. While other disabilities were often detected within the first year, psychiatric disabilities were detected after a mean time period of 14 years. Although some associations were noted, no individual risk factor was able to predict the occurrence of disabilities.

Conclusively, psychiatric disabilities affect more than one-third of survivors and are among the most common long-term consequence of childhood bacterial meningitis. Late discovery and predictive difficulties call for a revision of current guidelines to include a specific long-term strategy for detecting psychiatric disabilities.

Source: https://journals.lww.com/pidj/Abstract/2021/01000/Psychiatric_Disabilities_and_Other_Long_term.9.aspx
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