Outcome and Sequelae of Infectious Encephalitis

Publié le 1 janvier 2024
Mis à jour le 14 février 2024

Acute infectious encephalitis is a widely studied clinical syndrome. Although identified almost 100 years ago, its immediate and delayed consequences are still neglected despite their high frequency and possible severity. We reviewed the available data on sequelae and persisting symptoms following infectious encephalitis with the aim of characterizing the clinical picture of these patients at months to years after hospitalization. We searched PubMed for case series involving sequelae after infectious encephalitis. We carried out a narrative review of the literature on encephalitis caused by members of the Herpesviridae family (herpes simplex virus, varicella zoster virus, and human herpesvirus-6), members of the Flaviviridae family (West Nile virus, tick-borne encephalitis virus, and Japanese encephalitis virus), alphaviruses, and Nipah virus. We retrieved 41 studies that yielded original data involving 3,072 adult patients evaluated after infectious encephalitis. At least one of the five domains of cognitive outcome, psychiatric disorders, neurological deficits, global functioning, and quality of life was investigated in the reviewed studies. Various tests were used in the 41 studies and the investigation took place at different times after hospital discharge. The results showed that most patients are discharged with impairments, with frequent deficits in cognitive function such as memory loss or attention disorders. Sequelae tend to improve within several years following flavivirus or Nipah virus infection, but long-term data are scarce for other pathogens. Further research is needed to better understand the extent of sequelae after infectious encephalitis, and to propose a standardized assessment method and assess the rehabilitation efficacy in these patients.

Auteur : Kvam Kathryn A, Stahl Jean-Paul, Chow Felicia C, Soldatos Ariane, Tattevin Pierre, Sejvar James, Mailles Alexandra
Journal of clinical neurology (Seoul, Korea), 2024, vol. 20, n°. 1, p. 23-36