Kota: Rare case of meningoencephalitis detected in Covid-19 deceased patient

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Kota: A rare case of meningoencephalitis, an inflammation of the brain and its surrounding protective membranes, has been detected in a young patient, who died of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in Kota, but doctors are yet to ascertain whether it was caused by Sars-CoV-2, which causes the disease.

The authorities at the Government Medical College in Kota, which has been converted into a dedicated Covid-19 facility, are sending the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples of the patient to Pune-based National Institute of Virology (NIV) to find out if the viral infection

caused meningoencephalitis in the deceased patient.

Earlier, a 17-year-old boy from Baran was admitted to a private hospital in Kota on June 3, and three days later he tested Covid-19 positive and died on the same day at the Government Medical College.

Dr. Vijay Sardana, the principal of the Government Medical College, Kota, and also the head of the neurology department, said: “The Covid-19 patient was shifted to our hospital on June 6, but he was brought brain dead and expired a few hours after he was admitted.

“We had taken the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) sample of the patient and conducted the Covid-19 test, but it didn’t show any trace of the Sars-CoV-2 infection. However, the patient didn’t have any prior history of a cerebral condition. We’re sending the CSF sample to NIV in Pune to detect the virus, which caused meningoencephalitis. We’ll report the case to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and also study it,” he said.

Sardana said only three-four cases of meningoencephalitis have been reported in Covid-19 patients from countries such as Pakistan, China, and Japan so far. India is yet to report a single case of meningoencephalitis in a Covid-19 patient.

Meningoencephalitis resembles both meningitis and encephalitis. Meningoencephalitis can be caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoan or as a secondary sequel of other inflammations due to Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) is a chronic, potentially life-threatening condition caused by the human immunodeficiency virus.

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