Purpose: Prompt recognition and aggressive early treatment are the only effective measures against invasive meningococcal disease (IMD). Anti-inflammatory adjunctive treatment remains controversial and difficult to assess in patients with IMD. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of dexamethasone (DXM) as adjunctive treatment in different clinical forms of IMD, and attempt to answer if DXM should be routinely used in the treatment of IMD. Methods: In this non-interventional clinical study (NIS), 39 patients with meningococcal septicaemia with or without of meningitis were included, and compared regarding the impact of dexamethasone (DXM), as an adjunctive treatment, on the outcome of IMD. SPSS statistics is used for statistical processing of data. Results: Thirty (76.9%) patients with IMD had sepsis and meningitis, and 9 (23.1%) of them had sepsis alone. Dexamethasone was used in 24 (61.5%) cases, in both clinical groups. The overall mortality rate was 10.3%. Pneumonia was diagnosed in 6 patients (15.4%), arthritis in 3 of them (7.7%), and subdural effusion in one patient (2.6%). The data showed a significant statistical difference on the length of hospitalization, and WBC normalization in groups of patients treated with DXM. Conclusion: The use of DXM as adjunctive therapy in invasive meningococcal disease has a degree of proven benefits and no harmful effects. In fighting this very dangerous and complex infection, even a limited benefit is sufficient to recommend the use of DXM as adjunctive treatment in invasive meningococcal disease.
N. meningitidis;sepsis;meningitis;dexamethasone (DXM)