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More Meningitis Cases Reported in Michigan, More to Come

meningitis caused by steroid injections
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The Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) is coordinating with the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on a multi-state investigation of fungal meningitis cases including several in Michigan.

The outbreak doesn’t appear to be a threat to the general public, but affects those who have had an epidural steroid injection.  So far, there have been 22 confirmed cases in Michigan, including two fatalities.

Interim data shows that infected patients received an injection with one of three lots of preservative-free methylprednisolone acetate prepared by the New England Compounding Center in Framingham, Massachusetts.

The four Michigan facilities that received shipments of these recalled lots are working with MDCH to notify  patients who may have received this product and may be at risk for developing illness.  The facilities are:

Michigan Neurosurgical Institutes in Grand Blanc

Michigan Pain Specialists in Brighton

Neuromuscular and Rehabilitation in Traverse City

Southeast Michigan Surgical Hospital in Warren

As of October 8, most of the patients who received an epidural injection have been notified.  The CDC has expanded the notification process to include patients with injections to other sites, such as injections for joint pain.  Notification of these patients is ongoing.

Again, these fungal infections are not transmitted person-to-person.  Those who have had the contaminated injections typically develop symptoms about 4 weeks after the injection.

Symptoms include fever, vomiting, headache, neck stiffness, sensitivity to light, weakness or numbness, increasing pain, redness or swelling at the injection site.  Some patients’ symptoms were very mild in nature.

If you have had injections from one of these facilities and have not been contacted, please contact your physician as soon as possible.

For more information about the investigation on the meningitis outbreak, visit:  www.michigan.gov/emergingdiseases

 

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