Fungal meningitis

Meningitis is swelling of the protective membranes, or meninges, covering the brain and spinal cord

The swelling is usually caused by an infection with a bacteria or virus, but meningitis can also be caused by a fungus.

Fungal meningitis - the facts

  • Fungal meningitis is very rare 
  • It usually occurs when the immune system has been affected by disease, e.g. HIV infection, or by drug therapy e.g. for cancer treatment
  • Fungal meningitis is not considered to be contagious

Symptoms of fungal meningitis

Symptoms of fungal meningitis are similar to symptoms of other forms of meningitis. However, they often appear more gradually and can be very mild at first. See signs and symptoms

How is fungal meningitis treated?

  • Fungal meningitis is treated with long courses of high dose antifungal medications, usually given intravenously in the hospital
  • The length of treatment depends on the patient’s immune system and the type of fungus that caused the infection 
  • For people with immune systems that do not function well because of other conditions, such as HIV infection, diabetes or cancer, treatment is often longer

Been affected by fungal meningitis?

Don’t face meningitis alone. Call our Meningitis Helpline on 0808 80 10 388 to speak to our experienced staff. You can access our free support or ask us any questions. Whatever your experience, whenever it was, please get in touch. Our support is for life.