What Is Autoimmune Encephalitis?: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment

Encephalitis is poisoning or redness of the brain caused by an illness; the most usual cause is viral diseases and fungal poisoning.

Most people who have mild encephalitis can recover completely depending on the virus and inflammation involved, the most appropriate remedy, and the patient’s chances of recovery.

In acute encephalitis, the infection advances brain cells. In para-infectious encephalitis, the brain and spinal cord grow inflamed shortly after infection with a viral or bacterial infection.

What Is Autoimmune Encephalitis?

An autoimmune encephalitis is a group of similar conditions in which the body’s immune system attacks the brain and creates inflammation. In addition, the immune system produces substances called antibodies and attacks the cells of the brain.

I had earlier shared How Do You Get Bacterial Meningitis?: Meningitis Precautions. I hope you read the post.

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Table of Contents

Causes of encephalitis

  • Viral infection
  • Bacterial infections 
  • The common virus causing encephalitis are:
  • Herpes virus, epsteinbarrvirus, arbovirus, vericellazoster virus, enterovirus, rubeola, rubella virus

Read: Is my Sore throat Covid or allergies ?

Other causes are:

  • An allergic reaction to the vaccine
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Bacteria infection
  • AIDS Patient

I have already covered Is Hiv And Aids The Same Thing? in depth.

Types of encephalitis

  • Infectious encephalitis
  • Post-infectious encephalitis
  • Autoimmune encephalitis
  • Japanese encephalitis
  • Chronic encephalitis
  • Sub acute sclerosing panencephalitis
  • Progressive multifocal leukodystrophy

Symptoms of encephalitis

  • High temperature
  • Severe headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Changes in the mental state: confusion, disorientation, drowsiness
  • Seizures
  • Loss of sensation in a specific part of the body
  • Changes in personality
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Photophobia
  • Speaking difficulty
  • Muscles weakness
  • Stiff neck
  • Hallucinations
  • Vision loss
  • Involuntary movement of the eye


Imaging of the brain. MRI or CT images can look at any swelling or other condition of the brain that may be causing the symptoms,

A spinal tap (lumbar puncture) A needle inserted into your lower back removes the amount of protective fluid around the brain and spinal cord, the protective fluid around the brain and spinal cord.

To learn more, you must read: What is Spinal cord Injury?: Cure, Symptoms, Causes

Changes in this fluid are infections and inflammation in the brain. Sometimes CSF samples are tested to identify viruses or other infectious agents.

Read: Ashwagandha Top Health Benefits

Other lab tests. Samples of blood, urine, or discharge from the back of the throat are tested for viruses or other infectious substances.

Electroencephalogram. The electrodes attached to the skin on your scalp record the electrical activity of the brain. Some unusual patterns can diagnose encephalitis.

Brain biopsy. Rarely, a small sample of brain tissue can be removed for testing. Brain biopsy is usually performed when symptoms worsen and treatment does not affect.

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The difficulties caused by encephalitis are serious; it is necessary to seek medical treatment for this condition. Treatment depends on your age and condition, as well as the cause of the disease.

If a bacterial infection causes encephalitis, it can be treated with intravenous antibiotics. Treatment of herpes-related encephalitis includes supportive care and intravenous antiviral treatment with a drug such as acyclovir.

Other therapies are used to reduce fever, hydration, treat an attack if it develops, and reduce any pressure on the skull.

You must read this article: Fever In Adults: When To Worry

With proper care, most people can recover from encephalitis. However, infants and the elderly are at greater risk of sustaining permanent brain damage.

Read: What Vitamins And Minerals Are Good For the Brain?


Your risk depends on the severity of the inflammation. In mild cases of encephalitis, the inflammation may return within a few days. It takes weeks or months for people who have severe cases to recover. It can sometimes cause permanent brain damage or even death.

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