Rare Fungal Meningitis linked to steroid injections

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The Center for Disease Control and Prevention posted new updates this week on the rare fungal meningitis outbreak from last week, to currently now more than 100 affected. These numbers are expected to rise as we have found out that there is a 4-6 week incubation time from the injection for symptoms to occur.

The New England Compounding Center issued a recall of all its products, including the steriod linked to the outbreak of two types of fungal meningitis, Aspergillus and Exserohilium. Last Friday the government released the names of 75 clinics in 23 states that have received the contaminated medicine called Methylprednisolone Acetate(PF). Pennsylvania is on that list. Please call 1-800-387-4262 for a complete list of the clinics.

Meningitis is an inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord. Fungal meningitis is not contagious. The symptoms of fungal meningitis are simular to viral/bacterial and they are:

High fever, severe headache, stiff neck, vomiting, confusion, dizziness, seizures, sensitivity to light, lack of interest in eating/drinking.

Remember that if you have received a steriod injection and are not experiencing any symtpoms, please continue to monitor yourself for 4-6 weeks. If you are experiencing any or all of the symptoms, go immediately to the emergency room where you will recieve a high-dose antifungal medication, usually given intravenously.

Unfortunately, most of the anxiety now involves patients who received steriod shots for back pain and are worried about becoming seriouosly ill.

 

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