Initial management of suspected meningococcal infection

BMJ 1994; 309 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.309.6969.1660c (Published 17 December 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;309:1660

Parenteral benzylpenicillin is vital

  1. Keith Cartwright,
  2. Mike Levin,
  3. Norman Begg
  1. Consultant microbiologist, Public Health Laboratory, Gloucester GL1 3NN. Professor of paediatric infectious diseases, St Mary's Hospital Medical School, London W2 1NY. Consultant epidemiologist, PHLS Communicable Disease Surveillance Centre, London NW9 5EQ.

    EDITOR,—The seasonal upsurge in meningococcal infections is expected shortly. C S Nanayakkara and R Cox ask whether there is sufficient evidence to justify the chief medical officer's advice to general practitioners to give benzylpenicillin to patients with suspected meningococcal disease and whether there is a clear role for adjunctive steroid treatment in meningococcal disease.1

    A meta-analysis of recent trials has shown that dexamethasone given with or before the first dose of antibiotics in bacterial meningitis reduces the incidence of …

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