The neurodevelopmental outcome of 16 young infants with viral meningitis diagnosed under 3 months of age and a control group of 13 infants was evaluated at the Children’s Hospital Medical Center, and University of Concinnati, Ohio. Subtle but significant deficits were found in the meningitis group involving the receptive component of the Receptive-Expressive Emergent Language Scale (REEL), all subsections of the Preschool Language Scale (PLS), the Revised Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (PPVT-R), and the verbal comprehension/language-processing section of the Stanford-Binet. These deficits were recognized by 3 years of age, but required specific quantitative testing by a psychologist or speech and language pathologist for their detection. [1]

COMMENT. Children with enteroviral meningitis in early infancy should be monitored carefully for impairments of language development, particularly receptive language. Those with recognized deficits should receive increased language stimulation in the home prior to enrollment in school.