Brain functioning is complicating and interesting to know. The meninges are the protective layers of the brain and spinal cord; it also helps to navigate the flow of blood to the skull and brain. The cerebrospinal fluid, which formed in the brain, meninges also help this fluid to flow freely around the brain also.
There are three major layers of meninges. One is Dura mater, which is the outer layer. It comprised of the dense fibrous tissue, to protect the internal structure. This is the only layer which is sensitive to pain. The next one is Arachnoid mater, the middle one. It is filled with the elastic tissue and collagen. It looks like a spider-web structure. The cerebrospinal fluid runs under this layer within the subarachnoid space.
The next and last layer is called Pia mater. This is the innermost layer which is attached to the spinal cord and brain. This is the thinnest and delicate among the three layers. The arachnoid mater and Pia mater are the sources of inflammation that causes neck pain and nuchal rigidity. As the meninges cover the brain and spinal cord, which runs through the neck and torso. So there is a high chance to get inflammation and painful to move.
There are many reasons to have meningitis. One is Viral, which common and rarely life-threatening. It can cause by different kind of viruses that spread between people while sneezing, coughing or having poor hygiene. Also, it can happen for using sewage polluted water.
There are possibilities to have an infection from bacteria also. It can spread through the exchange respiratory, throat secretions like coughing and kissing. This infection is rare and fatal enough. Usually, these infections reach the brain from different routes. It can reach through the bloodstream, the bones of the skull from infected sinuses or inner ears. Also, brain injury or weakened immune system also compromised the inflammation.
The major symptoms of meningitis are fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, stiff neck, photophobia, confusion, Drowsiness, seizures. Not only adults, but the children are also getting infected with this. This infection can be diagnosed with a complete medical history, physical examination. There are some advanced proceedings of diagnosed are Lumbar puncture/spinal tap, blood testing, and computed tomography scan/CT scan.
In Lumbar puncture/spinal tap proceedings; there is a special needle to place in the lower back into the spinal canal. To measure the pressure in the spinal canal and brain, that needle will remove a small amount of cerebral spinal fluid (CSF). It also tests the infection or other problems.
There are some treatments for meningitis. For bacterial meningitis, doctors give a steroid named Dexamethasone. It reduces the inflammatory response by the bacteria. For viral meningitis, usually, the antiviral medications are used inject to fight with the virus. There are many vaccines are available to prevent the infection meningitis which is primarily recommended for the infants and children.