What are the possible sequelae of herpes simplex encephalitis (HSE) following treatment?

Updated: Jul 17, 2018
  • Author: Wayne E Anderson, DO, FAHS, FAAN; Chief Editor: Niranjan N Singh, MBBS, MD, DM, FAHS, FAANEM  more...
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Even in treated cases of HSE, complications and sequelae (both focal and global) are not uncommon. If treatment of HSE is delayed, permanent neurologic deficits may develop in survivors.

Common sequelae among survivors include motor deficits, seizure disorders, and changes in mental status. Cognitive and memory deficits are particularly common. So too are recurrent seizures; some authorities recommend prophylactic treatment with anticonvulsant drugs in patients with severe HSE.

In addition, patients with HSE are subject to the same complications as any other seriously ill and immobilized patients with depressed levels of consciousness (eg, aspiration, deep venous thrombosis, decubitus ulcers).

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