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Ask the Medical Expert Archives 2000-2004

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Cerebral Encephalitis
January 2000

Q. A friend is having a brain biopsy this week and may have cerebral fasciculatus. I cant find any info on this. Can you help me?

A. I have never heard of cerebral fasciculatus so I did I Medline search and found no such term either. I believe what you may have meant is cerebral encephalitis. This is an infection of the brain that causes an altered level of consciousness usually accompanied with confusion and disorientation. The diagnosis is usually made by spinal tap (Lumbar puncture).

One of the most common causes is Herpes Simplex Virus. Often this can be documented via spinal tap. However, if the cause can not be determined by spinal tap, then a brain biopsy may be recommended. There are various treatments depending on the cause, and prognosis is widely variable for this serious illness. See Ref for more detailed info.

I wish your friend well.

Ref: http://glaxocentre.merseyside.org/1outcome.htm

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