~ The teen had stopped attending school as her headaches were severe, lasting for prolonged durations, causing her to lose focus ~
A 14yr old Juhi Gaikwad* studying in Class X had been experiencing severe chronic headaches on a daily basis, over the past three years. These bouts had been hampering her attendance and performance at school as the pain was unbearable, making it difficult for her to concentrate on studies. Worried, her parents consulted with local doctors and had an MRI of the brain done, the scans however were found to be normal. Doctors had then administered her nerve block injections and medicines, yet, there was no relief. The headaches continued, due to this, the teen stopped attending school. Up until recently, the young girl had two episodes of acute headache when her family immediately got her to the Emergency Dept. at Hiranandani Hospital, Vashi- A Fortis Network Hospital.
Dr. Pawan Ojha, Neurologist, Hiranandani Hospital Vashi- A Fortis Network Hospital, took the patient under his care. Upon initial evaluation which revealed dryness around the eye glands amongst other indicators, he anticipated the patient to be suffering from Sjogren’s Syndrome. He counselled the parents to have the child undergo a LIP Biopsy which would support his prognosis. The family consented and the test was carried out, which was positive for Sjogren’s Syndrome, a Rheumatological disorder of the immune system, particularly identified with dryness of the eyes and mouth, but also known to cause Meningitis.
A Lumbar Puncture Test was carried out simultaneously, to conclude the prognosis. The results of the test showed that the Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) cell count was considerably higher, which indicated Meningitis (inflammation of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord); confirming that the Sjogren’s Syndrome was the cause for her Meningitis.
Speaking about the case, Dr. Pawan Ojha, Neurologist, Hiranandani Hospital Vashi- A Fortis Network Hospital, said, “After being treated for Aseptic Meningitis and low CSF pressure, the young girl was finally relieved of her headaches, and is now doing well. She has been successfully discharged and is on oral medication and requires regular visits for the next three months”.
The patient is now able to concentrate on studies, and has now resumed schooling and is more than content with the outcome. This case highlights the importance of seeking expert advice, as the root cause can only be accurately diagnosed and appropriate medical intervention be provided.