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meningitis & septicaemia can kill in hours!

People who are faced with meningitis and septicaemia have to act fast to help save a life.

Viral Meningitis and Learning Disabilities

9 comments

Posted by S K on 22 March 2013

My daughter had viral meningitis at 9 weeks of age. Now, at 7, we see her performing extraordinarily in math and science, but struggling with reading comprehension, vocabulary, and writing to topic (main idea and details). As an elementary teacher myself, I saw early on that she was not progressing in reading and writing as she should when compared to her achievement in the hard sciences. She also has difficulty remembering simple requests ("Pick up your socks") if there is any background noise present, and she seems to have a short-term memory issue (asking the same question 10 times over unless I make her repeat the answer back to me). Her pediatrician has referred her to an audiologist to be evaluated for possible auditory processing disorder. I'm wondering if her bout with meningitis could be directly related to her academic issues now. Thank you.

9 comments

Posted on 11 September 2014

Comment by P Morales

At just 2 weeks of age, my baby was hospitalized with a high fever, diagnosis was viral meningitis.
I started to notice her delayed development when she was close to 9 months and was still not sitting up by herself, much less crawling. We brought our concerns to her ped but he insisted all babies are different and they reach milestones at different ages. So we left it alone. She began crawling close to 12 months, did not walk until her 2nd bday and was not talking, other than mama dada and ball. Those were her only words at 2 years old. I tried to get her help but early intervention programs in California end when the child turns 2. So we had to wait an entire year to have her evaluated by the school district. After numerous tests they told me she was testing around the age of 18 months. It made me very sad because that answered a lot of my questions and concerns. My baby girl was delayed in all areas, motor, thought processing, speech, vision problems, and she is very clumsy. Now at the age of 7, she is in a general education class room and gets pulled out for the subjects of math, reading and language arts. She also gets speech and occupational therapy. She has come a long way, but I still see a huge gap in her learning abilities compared to kids her age. It worries me that she will have a hard time throughout her school years.

Posted on 15 April 2014

Comment by kim butler

hi there im am after reading down throw your blog and i myself am doing my dissertation on the effect meningitis can have on learning and im just wondering could you fill out my questionnaire and email in back to me at kimyb@live.ie. i myself am a meningitis survivor and also experience some of the same effects has you daughter.
i would be very grateful if you could help me out. this is my story.
Hi my name is Kim Butler and I am currently a 4th year student in St Nicholas Montessori College Ireland. I am in the process of completing my dissertation and I have chosen to research the effects meningitis has on the processing skills. I have chosen this has a have a huge interest in finding out more detail about the illness of meningitis and what the different effects it has had on other people.
Back into august 2009 I became very ill and was brought to Mullingar hospital and was diagnosed with invasive meningococcal bacterial meningitis. I was in intensive care for the first 5 days and then was moved to a general wards for the remaining 10 days. During my fifteen days in hospital I was treated with medication every four hours. When I got home I still had a long road to recovery as I lost the hearing in one of my ears so I was over and back to Tullamore for nearly a year getting check-ups. This was only one of my after effects it took me up to the Easter to return back to school for a full day and at that I find school very difficult in retaining information, reading and keeping my attention as I was extremely tired. From the time I got back to school I was diagnosed with having severe dyslexia and was given a reader for the remainder of my exams. Since my illness I have always been very interested in meningitis and what to learn more about it and its effects.
I would really appreciate it if you could take the time to fill out my questionnaire.
All details are strictly confidential and will only be used for the purpose of completing my dissertation.




Interview questions
Name(optional):
Age:
Gender:
1) How old were you when you were affected by meningitis?
2) What type of meningitis did you have?
3) When recovery from meningitis how long did it take to you to get back to your normal self?
4) How did the meningitis affect you?
5) Are any of these effects long term?
6) Do these effects affect you through physical development or cognitive development today?
7) If yes, what are the challenges you are faced with?
8) Do you think that meningitis has affected you academically?
9) Have your teachers implemented any strategies that benefit you academically eg. Learning support.......etc
10) Since meningitis do you find certain things harder such as school work, keeping up with your friends?
11) If there is any other information you would like to share please do?
12) Have you any else to add?

Thank you very much for your time and sharing your story with me.

Posted on 23 February 2014

Comment by S K

This is another update on my daughter. She has been tested by a clinical psychologist who has found that she has ADHD-Combined Type (inattention and hyperactivity) as well as "several deficits/delays in her phonological processing" which "could be indicators of a language-based learning disorder consistent with Dyslexia." I guess I'll never know if these are the direct result of her meningitis or if she was born with these issues. One of the most interesting subtests was when she had to repeat nonsense words that the psychologist said aloud (i.e., "kooplet" or "agawal") ... my daughter scored in the less-than-1st perentile for that one. We are now working with the school to develop a 504 education plan for her.

Posted on 09 December 2013

Comment by Donna sanders

My son contracted viral meningitis at 11 weeks old after his first week of day care. We have been tested by sylvans, tried numerous methods of tutoring, he is in modifications at school. His short term memory is shot, you have to repeat stuff so many time and he can be starring at you and it not sink it. He is a whiz at math but comphrension part is what gets him. He is a very nervous child. Has headaches and stomach pains. I am beginning to think it is all from the viral meningitis. We have struggled from day one. He crawled and walked fast, it hasn't affected any motor skills. He is now almost 9 years old and I really don't think he will ever read at this point. It is so discouraging. I am at loss for what steps to try now.

Posted on 05 November 2013

Comment by Iris S

My daughter contracted bacterial meningitis at 7 days old. She had some damage on her frontal lobe and some on her back lobes as well. The doctor said that there were high possibilities that she would not walk nor talk. We were terrified and scared that our only daughter would never say a word nor walk. We stayed at the hospital for about 2 months until she was cleared to go home. She did recover and hit all her milestones as she grew older. It wasn't until she went to preschool and kinder when the teachers noticed that she was delayed slightly. She knew how to write her name but would soon forget how to write it if she did not practice for a day. I got the teachers to do an IEP for them to evaluate her in kindergarden and so they started her with half day tutoring at school to help her with speech and auditory memorization skills. I did take her to take an auditory test with the doctors and she passed. But the school feels that she needs a lot of help with memorization skills. Now she is 7 and in second grade and I feel like she has not progressed in her level of grade. She writes with her left hand and still scribbles when coloring and making figures like circles to make drawings of people. She talks and behaves like a 4-5year old. She knows how to count to 20 but does not remember her numbers if you tell her to write after 10 .. she know her abc's but struggles a lot with reading. Everyone's stories gives me hope that she will overcome this. Thanks to all the comments. I will tell you though, although she does struggle with school she has a big heart and courage. She is strong minded and determined:)

Posted on 26 October 2013

Comment by S K

This is an update for any interested parties. My daughter was given an Auditory Processing evaluation shortly after I originally posted and passed with flying colors. However, she is now failing Second Grade and I have taken steps to formalize an intervention plan at her school. She continues to perform perfectly with straight computation in math and is a walking encyclopedia with science facts. However, she is routinely scoring 30-60% on school tests (including math/science tests which require her to read story problems). Her short-term memory problems persist, and she is extremely "elementary" in her writing process ("A camel lives in the desert. A white-winged dove lives in the desert. A rattlesnake lives in the desert"). She has an interesting "mis-cue" when it comes to answering questions ("Why did Carl and Kevin ask each other their names in the story?" was answered with "They asked each other their names because they're named Carl and Kevin"). I also perceive her to be 12-18 months behind in maturity and see her as more on-par with a 5- or 6-year-old child than the 7-year-old she is.

Posted on 06 July 2013

Comment by Rita Winters

Your discription of your child is very similar to what my son experienced. He had viral meningitis at age 3 months old. By age 2 he was not speaking and we had him tested at Children's Hospital Cincinnati Child Development Disorders Center. His diagnosis sounds very similar to what your child is experiencing. The team working with him believed that the viral meningitis caused his disability. While he had difficulty with reading and comprehensive, he scored in the 95th percentile for math and science for his age group. He seemed to be a mathematical genius who couldn't read well. He worked with a speech therapist from the age of 2 through high school and dealt with self esteem problems throughout school. He also attended 1 year of community college studying culinary arts. The good news is that he is now 33 years old and has lived on his own since age 21. He is a firefighter and doing very well.

Posted on 28 May 2013

Comment by Janine Gruter

My daughter, aged 13 years old contracted viral meningitis at the age of 5. She recovered well, and it was only around the age of 9 that she started showing concentration and behaviour problems that have caused her to now at the age of 13 to have language processing difficulties, which interfere with Maths and problem solving. She struggles to concentrate and takes 27mg of Concerta daily. I have always wondered why she has problems as she has 2 older brothers and they all developed in exactly the same way. She met all her developmental stages as a baby. I am wondering if there is any way I could find professional help to help "train" her brain to function better. She is having therapy at a language gym in Cape Town to help her to learn to process what she takes in.

Posted on 28 May 2013

Comment by Janine Gruter

My daughter, aged 13 years old contracted viral meningitis at the age of 5. She recovered well, and it was only around the age of 9 that she started showing concentration and behaviour problems that have caused her to now at the age of 13 to have language processing difficulties, which interfere with Maths and problem solving. She struggles to concentrate and takes 27mg of Concerta daily. I have always wondered why she has problems as she has 2 older brothers and they all developed in exactly the same way. She met all her developmental stages as a baby. I am wondering if there is any way I could find professional help to help "train" her brain to function better. She is having therapy at a language gym in Cape Town to help her to learn to process what she takes in.

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