45 yr old Subhash Kumar, a farmer from Samastipur, was brought to the hospital emergency unit with high fever. His reports from a local hospital highlighted that he was suffering from persistant fever for the last 1 week. Dr. Abhishek, Consultant Neurology found that the patient was having hallucinations was talking on irrelevant topics. He was also having episodes of unconsciousness and seizures (Fits). Subhash also had rigidity in the neck and decreased movement in the left side of the body. The CT scan showed spots in the brain but it was not conclusive. The pattern of brain involvement in the MRI scan looked similar to Herpes virus encephalitis, which is a common type of viral infection that causes brain fever and is responsible for high mortality.
The neuro care team at Paras Institute of Neurosciences, Patna confirmed the diagnosis with a lumbar puncture which confirmed herpes virus infection. He was started on anti-viral drug (Acyclovir). After 7 days of ICU care, anti-viral medication, specialized uninterrupted care, the patient starting showing signs of improvement.
After a stay of 2 weeks the patient started to eat food orally and was fit for discharge. According to Dr Abhishek, Consultant Neurology, Paras Patna, “Encephalitis is a major issue in Bihar. Herpes as well as non-herpes encephalitis are common here. The signs and symptoms usually get misdiagnosed as brain stroke, status epileptics/seizure (fits) disorder, simple fever or unconsciousness due to other infection resulting in delayed treatment; which can further complicate the situation. We want to spread awareness in the public that if they have fever, headache with consciousness in the form of irrelevant talk, hallucination or unconsciousness with or without seizure they should immediately come to a super specialty hospital, where all facilities are available.”
He adds, “Paras Patna has specialized clinical protocols to investigate and treat Encephalitis and is supported with the best radiology and pathology department. It is our endeavor to raise awareness about this fatal disease and prevent mortality with early detection and timely treatment.”