Study of cerebrospinal fluid levels of lactate, lactate dehydrogenase and adenosine deaminase in the diagnosis and outcome of acute meningitis

Link to article at PubMed

Neurol Res. 2021 Dec 1:1-5. doi: 10.1080/01616412.2021.2004366. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: Meningitis is a serious clinical health issue in most developing countries. Late diagnosis and treatment result in significant morbidity and mortality. This research aims to study the utility of CSF lactate, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), and adenosine deaminase (ADA) as diagnostic markers in acute meningitis, and to differentiate among varied aetiologies of acute meningitis and their outcomes.

METHOD: A cross-sectional observational case-control study was conducted in 30 patients of suspected meningitis of varied aetiologies and 30 controls without any pre-existing neurological disorder and who underwent lumbar puncture during spinal anesthesia. A fresh CSF sample was collected in a heparinized vial following an aseptic lumbar puncture. The levels of lactate, LDH and ADA were estimated and recorded.

RESULT: CSF lactate was significantly elevated in bacterial meningitis (BM) and cryptococcal meningitis, with 100% sensitivity when compared to controls. Elevated LDH was found only in BM, hence elevated LDH levels may strongly signify bacterial etiology. Significantly elevated ADA levels were noted in tuberculous meningitis. Significantly elevated levels of lactate and ADA were suggestive of slower clinical recovery and a prolonged hospital stay (p < 0.001).

CONCLUSION: Estimation of CSF lactate, LDH, and ADA levels is a rapid, inexpensive and simple procedure and can play a major role in the early differentiation of bacterial, viral, tuberculous, and fungal meningitis. This would facilitate the initiation of appropriate treatment as early as possible, thereby decreasing mortality and complications.

PMID:34850673 | DOI:10.1080/01616412.2021.2004366

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