Post–Dural Puncture Bacterial Meningitis

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A fatal case of viridans streptococcus meningitis is reported, which occurred as a complication of epidural anesthesia. One hundred seventy-nine reported cases of post–dural puncture meningitis are reviewed. Evidence suggests that most cases are probably caused by contamination of the puncture site by aerosolized mouth commensals from medical personnel, some are caused from contamination by skin bacteria, and, less frequently, other cases are caused directly or hematogenously by spread from an endogenous infectious site. Controversy exists regarding prevention, surveillance, incidence, and treatment of this serious complication.

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