Meningitis can be a cause of hydrocephalus. It may also develop as a complication after a shunt has been placed to treat hydrocephalus. When you are affected with meningitis, the bacterial infection can cause swelling of the tissue of the brain. The swelling can obstruct the flow of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain. When the flow of fluid is blocked, it accumulates in one area, which puts a large amount of pressure on the brain. That can lead to brain damage. Immediate treatment of the meningitis with antibiotics can reduce the inflammation caused by the infection and possibly relieve the blocked fluid before your brain tissue is injured.