What is the cause of profound neutrophilic pleocytosis in meningitis?

Updated: Jul 16, 2019
  • Author: Rodrigo Hasbun, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

The net result of the above processes is vascular endothelial injury and increased blood-brain barrier permeability, leading to the entry of many blood components into the subarachnoid space. In many cases, this contributes to vasogenic edema and elevated CSF protein levels. In response to the cytokines and chemotactic molecules, neutrophils migrate from the bloodstream and penetrate the damaged blood-brain barrier, producing the profound neutrophilic pleocytosis characteristic of bacterial meningitis.


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