Viral Meningitis and Constant Headaches?

Posted , 6 users are following.


Over a week ago I went to A&E with severe nausea, headache, back pain etc. I was crying in pain and with worry. I have had headaches previous to this for 6 months or so with my GP putting it down to sinusitis. (its not because CT scan was ok)

In A&E after several blood tests etc the doctor confirmed that she was pretty certain I had viral meningitis. I also had a water infection. I was treated with IV antibiotics and with pain killers which relieved my head so I was comfortable.

I also had a CT scan and a lumber puncture which all came back clear. Lumber puncture was taken after 3 lots of IV antibiotics. I was finally discharged from hospital after 3 nights in hospital with a water infection which I was told young men especially in there 20's don't get unless there was something running there immune system down. (like viral meningitis)

My head has not improved at all and sometimes when I stand up I get a sharp pain in the side of my head. So I went to see my GP who is certain its a tension headache so he has prescribed me Amitriptyline and has told me not to take any painkillers which I have been doing for 5 nights now but I still have very little improvement in my head.

My wife is certain I have had viral meningitis because a lot of people complain of chronic headaches up to 6 months after they were diagnosed with it.

My question is could the lumber puncture come back clear because I had the antibiotics prior to having it done?

And does anyone have any idea how to deal with these chronic headaches other than living my life of codeine and ibuprofen?

I have not been back to work since and have been signed off by my GP until things improve.

I just feel a bit let down by the NHS especially with being discharged with a water infection and not much mention of viral meningitis after they found the water infection?

Hopefully some one can help me out and maybe advise me on my next steps.

Sorry for the long post.

Kind Regards

Nick Simpson

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6 Replies

  • Posted

    There is no point in contributing on here because no one seems to care or bother replying!

    Another waste of time forum!

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  • Posted

    Hi Nick

    Sorry so late in replying - I've only just spotted you! I'm on the Migraine discussions. My chronic migraines started 10 1/2 years ago following a bout of viral encephalitis. however, my temp GP in his wisdom did not admit me to hospital so I have struggled to get his diagnosis accepted by hospital consultants, although all finally agree that nothing else matches my symptoms then and now.

    I had severe problems with short term memory and concentration for over a year with desparate constant headaches. These now appear as chronic migraine - at worst putting in me in bed 5-10 days a month and unable to work for the last 4 years.

    First things first - start a headache diary (Migraine Trust has a simple one) then come off all your meds - cold turkey if you can to see if any of your symptoms are medication overuse. Try for at least a month off the meds - best to work with your GP or get referred to a neurologist. MRI/CT scans will reveal any brain damage form the virus and EEG/ECG and neuro psychological tests con confirm any brain function impairment. I have what's known as a "light footprint" so not disabled but simply disabling!

    get in touch and we'll compare notes - sounds like I'm 10 years ahead of you! Don't give up hope, my current GP is still assuming I'll keep on recovering even if its snail pace!

    best wishes

    Helen xx

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    • Posted

      Dear duvet,

      If your still on this forum and still see this message i would? suggest looking up autoimmune encephalitis.

      I have a similar story to yourself and had my viral encephalitis 13 years ago. I am now looking at being diagnosed with AE. It's all very new in the medical profession i believe so the discovery might not have been around when you got ill.

      Of course you might know all this already 😊.

      Hope your migraines are better

      Freya xx

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  • Posted

    I'm sorry u are going through this I almost. Die from viral meningitis last year in Aug and I have been dealing with the pain for a year and some month. I have to end up having brain surgery. And getting a vp shunt put in me I suffer from chronic headaches and nausea vomiting memory loss. Chronic body pain and insomnia. And eat it hard to deal with this I also suffer from depression and anxiety. From having virl meningitis 
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  • Posted

    Hi Nick

    I too found myself in A&E in September as a result of having the worst headache of my life. After brain and lung scans I then had a lumber puncture after antibiotics which showed I had Viral Meningitis and Shingles in the eye/face. I was in hospital for 2 weeks and very very ill. I couldn't bear light, couldn't stand, even the pillow hurt my head, I couldn't touch my chin to my chest and had morphine to stop me crying with pain. 70 bags of Acliclovir later I was discharged. I am now 8 weeks later and have to sleep for 5 hours every afternoon and take pain killers to sleep and have good and bad days.

    Apparently it is quite normal if you have VM to be sent home 2 or 3 days later normally they give you pain killers. I was kept in so long as I had two nasty viral illnesses. 

    I have found that sleep helps the headaches, I have stopped caffeine, dairy, meat and it goes without saying Alcohol! All i eat and drink is herbal teas, litres of water, fruit, green juice, vegetables, nuts, fish and vitamin supplements which makes me feel better too.

    Only take pain relief when you need it as most of it is addictive.

    If you are still concerned, visit your doctor and ask for a second opinion. I hope you get much better and remember to sleep a lot, drink litres of water and eat clean.


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