Actinomyces meyeri meningitis: The need for anaerobic cerebrospinal fluid cultures

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We herein present a rare case of Actinomyces meyeri-induced meningitis that occurred in a patient of advanced age with poor oral hygiene. Although Gram staining of the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) revealed Gram-positive rods and a blood culture was positive for the organism, a bacterial culture of the CSF was negative. Anaerobic cultures of CSF specimens are not routinely performed; however, anaerobes are sometimes involved in central nervous system infection. We therefore believe that anaerobic cultures should be considered in high-risk cases, such as those involving necrotizing bowel lesions or poor oral hygiene. A negative result on a CSF culture can result in misdiagnosis and inappropriate treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67-71
Number of pages5
JournalInternal Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2014


  • Actinomyces meyeri
  • Anaerobic culture
  • Cerebrospinal fluid
  • Meningitis
  • Poor oral hygiene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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