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Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Meningitis: Death Toll at 28



Three more people -- two in Michigan and one in Tennessee -- have died of fungal meningitis, the CDC reported Tuesday.

The tally in the outbreak, linked to spinal injections of a contaminated steroid, now stands at 356 cases of the disease -- 28 of them fatal -- in 19 states.

And seven people have developed peripheral joint infections after they the tainted steroid -- preservative-free methylprednisolone acetate -- was injected into joints to control pain.

No fatalities have been associated with those injections.

The outbreak began after a Massachusetts company, the New England Compounding Center, shipped three separate lots of the steroid -- some 17,000 vials -- to pain clinics in 23 states, where it was mainly used in epidural injections to control chronic back pain.

Unopened vials from two of the three lots have now been shown to be contaminated with the black mold Exserohilum rostratum and testing is continuing on the third lot, the CDC reported.

31/10/2012  :  By Michael Smith / Med Page Today.

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