Child's Nervous System

, Volume 35, Issue 7, pp 1117–1128 | Cite as

Brain abscess in pediatric age: a review

  • Chiara MameliEmail author
  • Teresa Genoni
  • Cristina Madia
  • Chiara Doneda
  • Francesca Penagini
  • Gianvincenzo Zuccotti
Review Article



The purpose of the paper is to examine the current state of the art about epidemiology, diagnosis, and treatment of this infection.


A review of the literature was performed through a PubMed search of original articles, case reports, and reviews using the key words “brain abscess,” “cerebral abscess,” “brain infection,” “intracranial suppuration,” “otogenic brain abscess,” “otitis complications,” and “sinusitis complications.”


Pediatric brain abscess is a rare but serious infection, often involving patients with specific risk factors and burdened by a high risk of morbidity and mortality. Brain abscess incidence and mortality decreased over the years, thanks to improved antibiotic therapy, new neurosurgical techniques, and the wide spread of vaccinations. There are no guidelines for the adequate diagnostic-therapeutic pathway in the management of brain abscesses; therefore, conflicting data emerge from the literature. In the future, multicentric prospective studies should be performed in order to obtain stronger evidences about brain abscesses management. Over the next few years, changes in epidemiology could be observed because of risk factors changes.


Brain abscess Intracranial infection Children Central nervous system infections 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chiara Mameli
    • 1
    Email author
  • Teresa Genoni
    • 1
  • Cristina Madia
    • 1
  • Chiara Doneda
    • 2
  • Francesca Penagini
    • 1
  • Gianvincenzo Zuccotti
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Pediatrics, V. Buzzi Childrens’ HospitalUniversity of MilanMilanItaly
  2. 2.Pediatric Radiology and Neuroradiology UnitChildren Hospital V. BuzziMilanItaly

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