Nancy, a 24-year-old nurse, took a day off work as she had a headache. Over the day her headache worsened, she became intolerant to light, and she developed a rash on her legs and chest. Nancy’s mother rushed her into hospital where a lumbar puncture was performed in order to gather a sample of cerebrospinal fluid. The lumbar puncture revealed that Nancy had meningitis. Meningitis is caused by an infection of the cerebrospinal fluid resulting in inflammation of the meninges. 1. What are the meninges?
They are three membranous layers that surround the brain and spinal cord. 2. Name the meningeal layers that surround the brain and spinal cord and explain the relative location of each. Dura mater, arachnoid mater, and pia mater. Dura mater is the tough, fibrous outermost layer that lines the inside of the cranium, or sits next to the epidural space of the vertebral column. Arachnoid mater: is the middle layer located on the inner surface of the dura, superficial to the pia. Pia mater: is the thin, innermost layer that adheres to the outer surface of the brain and spinal cord, and the origins of the cranial and spinal nerves. 3. What is cerebrospinal fluid and what is its function?
CSF is a clear liquid that bathes the brain and spinal cord. CSF provides the brain and spinal cord with nutrients and helps to create a chemically stable environment. 4. Which meningeal layer(s) would the doctor need to pierce with the needle in order to gather a sample of cerebrospinal fluid? The doctor would need to pierce both the dura mater and the arachnoid mater in order to gain access to the subarachnoid space and the CSF.
Cory, a 24-year-old male, was knocked off his motorcycle by a car. When Cory landed on the ground his head was forced away from his right shoulder. The injury pulled the ventral and dorsal rootlets of his C5 and C6 spinal nerves out of his spinal cord. Cory had...
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