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Aseptic (Chemical) Meningitis in a Child After Posterior Fossa Surgery

Shanker, Kanika MD*; Feja, Kristina N. MD, MPH*†‡; Tolan, Robert W. Jr MD*†§

Infectious Diseases in Clinical Practice: March 2011 - Volume 19 - Issue 2 - p 137-138
doi: 10.1097/IPC.0b013e3181f5e994
Case Reports

Meningitis after neurosurgical procedures, including placement of ventriculoperitoneal shunts, is a frequently encountered infectious diseases problem, necessitating prompt and thoughtful evaluation. A 9-year-old girl developed meningitis after posterior craniotomy and ventriculoperitoneal shunt placement for management of a right-sided cerebellar pilocystic astrocytoma. Initial concerns included postoperative meningitis or shunt infection, but multiple cultures of cerebrospinal fluid were sterile, and she did not respond to antibacterial therapy. Aseptic or chemical meningitis (although uncommon and rarely reported) was considered, and treatment with dexamethasone was curative.

From the *Department of Pediatrics, †Division of Allergy, Immunology and Infectious Diseases; The Children's Hospital, Saint Peter's University Hospital; ‡University of Medicine and Dentistry, New Jersey School of Public Health, New Brunswick, NJ and §Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA.

Correspondence to: Robert W. Tolan Jr, MD, MOB 3110, 254 Easton Ave, New Brunswick, NJ 08901. E-mail:

The authors have no funding or conflicts of interest to disclose.

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.