Last reviewed 01/2018

There are local complications:

  • focal neurology
  • epilepsy

Wider neurological effects:

  • meningitis and empyema is the abscess drains outwards
  • ventriculitis is the abscess drains centrally
  • raised intracranial pressure:
    • mass effect
    • oedema
    • hydrocephalus

Systemic effects:

  • septic

In addition post infection complications include:

  • fibrotic tissue formation in the abscessed area
  • reduction in brain tissue during surgery
  • abscess rupture into the ventricular space (1)
  • death(1)


  • 1. Tammy Kielian. Immunopathogenesis of brain abscess. Journal of Neuroinflammation 2004;1:16.