Viral Encephalitis: Current Treatments and Future Perspectives

Author(s): Renan Barros Domingues

Journal Name: Central Nervous System Agents in Medicinal Chemistry
Formerly Current Medicinal Chemistry - Central Nervous System Agents

Volume 12 , Issue 4 , 2012

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Several viruses may cause central nervous system infections that lead to a broad range of clinical manifestations. The course of the viral encephalitis can be acute, sub acute, or chronic. Some viruses have the ability to enter into the brain and cause direct injury, while others activate inflammatory cells that attack the central nervous system (CNS) secondarily. Some types of viral encephalitis occur in previously healthy individuals, while others affect immunocompromised patients. The epidemiology of viral encephalitis has undergone changes in recent years. Factors such as evolving lifestyles and ecological changes have had a considerable impact on the epidemiology of some types of viral encephalitis. The result is a change in the etiology spectrum of viral encephalitis, with new types of encephalitis arising or returning from time to time. Many scientific achievements in neuroimaging, molecular diagnosis, antiviral therapy, immunomodulatory treatments, and neurointensive care have allowed more precise and earlier diagnoses and more efficient treatments, resulting in improved outcomes. Despite these advances, there is still considerable morbidity and mortality related to these disorders. This aim of this article is to review the current knowledge of the current drugs used in the management of the most important viral encephalitis, focusing on the mechanisms of action, efficacy, and side effects of the drugs. In addition, future perspectives in this area will be addressed. Despite the technological advances, much effort has yet to be undertaken to reduce the impact of these potentially devastating diseases.

Keywords: Virus, encephalitis, treatment, antiviral drugs, immunomodulatory agents, CNS lesion, brain parenchyma, intracranial pressure

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Article Details

Year: 2012
Published on: 29 October, 2012
Page: [277 - 285]
Pages: 9
DOI: 10.2174/187152412803760582
Price: $65

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