Brain Abscess

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BRAIN ABSCESS
Definition
-an infection in the brain that is encapsulated (confined within its own area) and localized to one or more areas inside of the brain
-a collection of immune cells, pus, and other material in the brain, usually from a bacterial or fungal infection
-occur in all children, but are more common in young school-aged children and occur twice as often in males than in females
-usually associated with congenital heart disease in young children

Etiology
-Direct extension of cranial infections (osteomyelitis, mastoiditis, sinusitis, subdural empyema)
-Penetrating head wounds (including neurosurgical procedures)
-Hematogenous spread (in bacterial endocarditis, congenital heart disease with right-to-left shunt, or IV drug abuse)

Signs and Symptoms
* FRONTAL LOBE:
* Hemiparesis
* Aphasia
* Seizure
* Frontal headache
* TEMPORAL LOBE:
* Localized headache
* Changes in vision
* Facial weakness
* Aphasia
* CEREBELLAR ABSCESS:
* Occipital headache
* Ataxia (inability to coordinate movements)
* Nystagmus (rhythmic, involuntary movements of the eye)
* In babies and younger children:
* Fever
* A full or bulging fontanelle (soft spot located on the top of the head)
* Sleepiness or fewer alerts than usual
* Increased irritability
* High-pitched cry
* Poor feeding
* Projectile vomiting
* Seizures
* In older children:
* Fever
* Complaints of severe headaches
* Nausea and vomiting
* Changes in personality or behavior
* Changes in speech
* Problems walking
* Increased movement in the arms or legs (spasticity)
* Seizures

Pathophysiology

Diagnostic Exam
* Blood tests
* X-ray
* Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
* Computerized tomography scan (CT or CAT scan)
* Urine and stool tests
* Sputum…...

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