I had autoimmune encephalitis approx. 2 years ago. It was hard to detect b/c I also had two different types of epilepsy and multiple other problems.
The first time I had the test, I was in a coma. This was verified by the Mayo Panel Test and indeed, I did have autoimmune encephalitis.
A few weeks later I was readmitted.....have no memory of the details, and was once again given the test. This is a spinal tap....and while it was uncomfortable, you couldn't exactly call it painful. (Warning: If you have bad knees, see if it can be performed in the side position). I can't complain about the test itself....especially in comparison to one I had 30 or so years prior. Today local anesthetic is used. Just make sure that you follow directions about your position afterwards.
I was treated and yes, treatment consists of multiple tests, antibiotics given IV and interviews by neuropsychiatrists. (4 times, as I recall). The latter is done to help confirm the portion of the brain affected....and this is important. I consider myself fortunate, but I do have some problems with memory that didn't exist beforehand. Some people are more negatively affected.
Two years doesn't seem like such a long time, but I live in a large city, had access to excellent medical care and still had problems with doctors trying very hard to understand it. How did I get it? Where did it come from? At that time there was so little information.....today it's better, but just as unknown for the most part. How long did I have encephalitis?....(the present thinking is that it's started with E. and then goes into A.E.). Who knows I was one sick chick, OK, hen, at age 75.
I've had no recurrence. To the best of my knowledge the Mayo Panel is still considered "the test." I did have faulty vision in my l. eye that quickly moved to the r. (vision problems were going on for probably a few wks.), and then one morning I simply couldn't walk on one leg....fortunately I had two epileptic seizures while in the ER, both witnessed by doctors or I'd probably still be looking for answers. I also have two different types of epilepsy and have to take drugs for them, or I quickly slip into seizures. This was all new to me.
Hope this helps. I haven't had a recurrence since....and hope the same will remain true. Yours, Lenora