Post meningitis effects? Depression etc

Hi, i had meningococcal meningitis when i was 18 (nearly 5 yrs ago) and I was in intensive care, a coma, and had a 6 month outpatient period afterwards.

Side effects at the time after the disease included migraines and generally being very weak, sick, confused and my attention waned easily.

The headaches stayed with me for a long time and i also had a mild bout of pneumococcal meningitis too about 8 months later.

I have since suffered with depression and anxiety issues as well as being easily irritable and stressed/unhappy/short tempered which I have always tried to ignore but they've become worse and very visible to my family/girlfriend.

So far the doctors have only recommended speaking therapy (cognitive behavioural) and a mention of anti depressants.

I know that meningococcal meningitis affects the brain and its chemistry - could my depression by a side effect of the meningitis? My parents said my emotions and behaviour changed whilst I had meningitis and have since stayed that way (i never had any previous bouts of depression etc prior to the meningitis).

i'm getting booked back in at doctors but don't really want to resort to anti depressants for fear of their side effects or dependance.

2 Replies

  • Hi

    This sounds very like my case. Depression is common - exhaustion, irritability and despair, sudden drops in emotional energy etc. Ten years on, I look back and see a long, gradual healing process, with sometimes a feeling that you take a step forward, then two backwards. Nevertheless, you will get better. Unlike you, I had some bouts of depression before the meningitis, and the difference was that during the earlier ones I didn't want to live, while in recovery from meningitis I felt so lucky to be alive that I knew there was a way forward, and I tried consciously to adopt an attitude of gratitude for every small bit of progress, every bit of help (or just tolerance) from friends and family. And yes, talking about it helps.

    On a couple of occasions I waited till I had the house to myself, sat down and allowed myself the luxury of a really good howling crying session for quite a few minutes: I really do recommend this! The other thing that helps a lot of people is St John's Wort - a herbal remedy you can get in pill form etc and which does have some scientific research behind it. It takes a week or so to start helping, on a daily dose, and there are no side-effects, addiction etc.

    You will have been changed by your experience - think of it as post-traumatic stress, or like escape from a near-miss road accident - and you will probably never be quite the same; but you will get better.


  • Hi there, they say that the only way to recover from this ordeal your body has been through is to accept it, understand it and learn to manage it. A lot will have changed in every aspect of who you are and all you can do is to keep your body at its peak health naturally... There's one product and only one that's a unique health system to put your body's levels at the top. It's called KYANI. You can see the products on my website and of you want to know more or just chat then my email is it's eliminated my depression, anxiety, a lot of my fatigue and energy levels have improved... Good luck Sarah

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