Septic Embolic Encephalitis

  • Derk Krieger
  • Johannes Brachmann
  • Werner Hacke


Septic embolic encephalitis (SEE) results from infectious, ischemic, and hemorrhagic damage to the neuro-parenchyma following infective thromboembolism from any part of the body. The heart is the most common source (infective endocarditis), followed by bacteremia and pulmonary infections. At autopsy, SEE is characterized by diffuse congestion and hyperemia of the leptomeninges, cerebral edema, and sometimes focal subarachnoid hemorrhage. Numerous microabscesses can be seen and occasionally they coalesce to form space-occupying macroabscesses. Vessel occlusion by thromboemboli and bacterial vasculopathy (including septic erosion of the vessel wall) can result in cerebral ischemia, intracerebral hemorrhage, or both. Evaluation and treatment of septic embolic encephalitis in the neurocritical care unit requires an interdisciplinary approach.


Infective Endocarditis Cerebral Malaria Prosthetic Valve Brain Abscess Serratia Marcescens 
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Suggested Reading

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Derk Krieger
  • Johannes Brachmann
  • Werner Hacke

There are no affiliations available

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