Rapid weight loss with TB meningitis

My boyfriend has been ill in South Afruca with a mystery illness. It has been 'diagnosed' as TB meningitis, more because they are at a loss as to what it is although his first csf showed meningitis. He has had 4 lumbar punctures which should show him improving but they show him getting worse. He has lost 13kg (approx 2stone) in weight in the last 5 weeks. Is this normal. Have others with TB meningitis suffered such weight loss? Before illness ( literally up to the day before) he was at the gym 4 days a week and teaching karate so was very fit with a lot of muscle which seems to have rapidly disappeared. Please let me know your experiences as am going out of my mind with worry.

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  • Hello, sorry to read that, i lost 17 k in 2 weeks, after 4 years i got back just 4 k but i am fine.

  • Wow that really was rapid weight loss. 😧Was yours TB menigitis too?

  • How long did your weight loss go on for?

  • Hi. Really sorry to hear this. I don't know much about TB meningitis. This is a long time for him to be in hospital, such a worry for you. Is SA your home or are you visiting? I can say that I was aslo fairly fit before taking ill and lost 8lbs over first 2 weeks. He will start to put the weight back on as he gets better. What are they giving him to help him, is he eating & drinking even a little bit.

  • Just visiting!! They have given him a tablet called pyroxidine to help with his appetite and I am trying to get him to drink fresubin energy drinks but if he manages 1 a day that is an achievement on top of a very limited amount of food eg handful of blueberries, some watermelon, a few small cubes of chicken. Trying to find that one food that he might fancy and ignite his appetite. Just really wanted to hear if this weight loss is normal as I don't believe they have diagnosed him correctly and they still know there is something wrong with him on top of the meningitis but they are hitting brick walls every time they run a test. They want to do a SPECT scan next so we will see. Thanks for replying - nice to get some feedback from others who have been there. Hope you are fully recovered.

  • Oh gosh if you are visiting, its very difficult to get the support of family & friends which you could really do with. So long as he is eating something & getting fluids. If he feels queasy its really hard for him to eat. I don't know the medication he is on but hopefully its an anti sickness drug. I personally couldnt eat anything milky or creamy for about 3 weeks. To be honest i am still forcing myself to eat as i have very little appetite. It might help to email Meningitis Now for a bit of advice, they may have some pointers. A bit difficult as different countries have different ways of working. Have you tried googling the current symptoms? You may spot something they havent looked for. Most importantly make sure the medical team know EVERYTHING possible about his family medical history or anything slightly unusual before he fell ill. Best of luck to you both.

  • Many thanks for your reply, how long ago did you have meningitis?

  • Hi, my cousin was diagnosed with TB meningitis two months ago. She lost about 15 Kg in only two weeks. Now she is getting better. Based on my experience taking care of my relative, I want to give you an advice about feeding your boyfriend. It is extremely important for him to take the appropriate food and liquids, my cousin barely ate because of the nausea and that had terrible consequences, with TB infecting other organs such as kidney and lung. When she started to be feed via a nasogastric tube, she gradually and slowly has been getting better.

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