Fatal Cerebral Vasospasm following a Haemophilus influenzae Meningitis in a Young Child with Ventriculoperitoneal Shunt

Pediatr Neurosurg. 2021;56(1):90-93. doi: 10.1159/000512864. Epub 2021 Jan 28.


Introduction: Despite the successful implementation of Haemophilus influenzae vaccination, invasive serotypes still lead to a fatal infection. We recently cared for a patient with a ventriculoperitoneal shunt (VPS) and H. influenzae meningitis and septicemia complicated by vasospasm. Vasospasm caused by Haemophilus central nervous system infection has not been previously reported.

Case presentation: A 34-month-old patient with a recent VPS presented with H. influenzae meningitis and sepsis. Despite the explant of hardware, followed by maximum medical management, the patient developed stroke due to severe vasospasm, which led to diffused anoxic brain injury.

Conclusions: We aim to alert for the possible critical condition caused by H. influenzae. It is essential to treat the underlying illness, despite the presence of a VPS. Surgical implant tends to be overlooked by other subspecialists. Being vaccinated to H. influenzae does not protect from different subtypes like non-typeable H. influenzae. The cause of vasospasm remains unclear.

Keywords: Case report; Haemophilus influenzae; Meningitis; Vasospasm; Ventriculoperitoneal shunt.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Haemophilus influenzae
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Meningitis, Haemophilus*
  • Sepsis*
  • Vasospasm, Intracranial* / etiology
  • Ventriculoperitoneal Shunt / adverse effects