Bengaluru: Twenty-one-year-old Anil Kumar, a college student, had a harrowing moment when he developed sudden fever and slipped into a coma just before his final year exams. For this happy and cheerful college student, the sudden onset of high fever did not subside even after medication, followed by severe headache and continuous vomiting. His panic stricken parents approached a local doctor.
“Although he was diagnosed with typhoid, there was absolutely no improvement on his condition at the previous hospital. Later he was admitted to another hospital in the city. Anil started having seizures and by the time he was brought to Fortis Hospitals, his condition had deteriorated. He was intubated and initiated on mechanical ventilation,” said Dr P.R. Krishnan, Consultant Neurologist, Fortis Hospital. He said that a cerebrospinal fluid analysis suggested Encephalitis – which is caused by a virus and leads to inflammation of the brain.
“This can affect a person at any age. This rare kind of virus affects both the brain and the spinal cord. Rigorous and timely treatment is required to cure the patient,” said Dr Krishnan.
When Anil was shifted to Fortis Hospitals, Bannerghatta, he was in a critical condition. The patient was diagnosed with acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM) - a medical condition which affects the white matter of the brain and spinal cord.
“Anil had an odd viral infection in the brain, which was extensive. We performed many tests on him. The results indicated viral infection, which was treated by antiviral medication. He regained consciousness after a month, but was very weak and could not move his limbs or hands,” said Dr Krishnan.
“After further investigations, we understood that the infection involved the brain stem. We started the treatment to improve his brain damage and also started providing physiotherapy sessions after which his condition gradually started improving. The imperative factors of timely treatment and diagnosis plays an important role in a patient’s recuperation and we are happy that Anil has shown vast improvement in his health and is on the path to recovery,” the doctor added.
“I was indeed shocked to know I was in coma for a month, I’m extremely glad that I’m heading back towards my normal life now after treatment,” said Anil.