Meningitis Case Study
J.H. is a 5-week-old infant brought to the emergency department (ED) by his mother, who speaks little
English. Her husband is at work. She is young and appears frightened and anxious. Through a translator,
Mrs. H. reports that J.H. has not been eating, sleeps all of the time, and is “not normal.”
What are some of the obstacles you need to consider, recognizing that Mrs. H. does not speak or
understand English well?
You perform your primary assessment and question Mrs. H. with a translator. Which of these
findings are abnormal and need to be reported? Select all that apply and state rationale.
a. Anterior fontanel palpable and tense
b. Pupils equal and +3
c. Temperature 96.8 ° F (36 ° C) rectally
d. Heart rate: 85 beats/min
e. Positive Babinski reflex
f. High-pitched cry
g. Refusal of PO intake per mother
Where you would assess the Babinski reflex on an infant?
J.H. is admitted to the medical unit with the diagnoses of meningitis and rule out sepsis. The ED
physician gives the orders shown in the chart.
Emergency Department Orders
CBC with differential