Symptoms of encephalitis may be mild to begin with, but can become more serious over hours or days.
Occasionally the symptoms may develop gradually over several weeks or even months.
The first symptoms of encephalitis can be similar to Bird flu , such as:
Some people may also have a spotty or blistery rash on their skin.
But these early symptoms don't always appear and sometimes the first signs of encephalitis may be the more serious symptoms listed below.
More severe symptoms develop when the brain is affected, such as:
There may also be symptoms of meningitis , such as a severe headache, sensitivity to bright lights, a stiff neck and a spotty rash that doesn't fade whena glass is pressed against it.
Dial 999 immediately to request an ambulance if you or someone else has serious symptoms of encephalitis.
It's a medical emergencythat needs to be seen in hospital as soon as possible.
Read about how encephalitis is diagnosed and how encephalitis is treated .
Find out about encephalitis, a rare but serious condition that causes inflammation of the brain.
Find out about the main signs and symptoms of encephalitis, and when to get medical advice.
Find out about the main causes of encephalitis, including viral infections and problems with the immune system.
Find out about the tests that may need to be carried out to diagnose encephalitis, including brain scans and a lumbar puncture.
Find out how and where encephalitis is treated.
Find out about the further problems that can occur after encephalitis, and what help and support is available.