The U.S. Centers for Disease control has linked an outbreak of fungal meningitis to a steroid medication traced to a Massachusetts compounding plant. The medication is suspect in the deaths of five people and it is believed to have sickened 35 others. Several of those that became ill have also suffered strokes linked to the infection.
Fungal meningitis is a rare illness but it is life threatening. It is usually seen in patients with high risk factors including AIDS, leukemia or people with immunodeficiency. It is not transmitted from person-to-person and is usually contracted by inhaling fungal spores in the environment or in contaminated soil.,
In this case, however, the outbreak of aspergillus meningits appears to have been contracted from a contaminated medication used in a steroid injection in the spine to treat back pain. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration tested some sealed vials of the steroid medication and it was found to contain the fungus.
So far, the reported cases of meningitis have been in Virginia, Maryland, Florida, North Carolina, Indiana and Tennessee.
The New England Compounding Center in Framingham, Mass. has recalled three lots of the medication and pharmacies are warned to discontinue all products from he New England Compounding Center until the investigation is complete.
Compound pharmacies combine drugs to create a customized medication or they repackage drugs bought in bulk into single dosages. The fear is that the sterility of medications can be compromised during the repackaging process and that might be the problem in this case.
Symptoms of Infection
Symptoms of a meningitis infections include the sudden onset of a fever, headache and stiff neck. Other symptoms can include vomiting, nausea, light sensitivity and altered mental state.
For more information, see the Centers for Disease Control
This information is provided by Washington Injury Attorney blog, a service of The Farber Law Group. We represent people who have been seriously injured due to dangerous or defective products and the family of those who have died. With our help, you may recover compensation for your damages.