October 11, 2012 — According to disease experts, symptoms of fungal meningitis may be very mild and atypical of common types of meningitis caused by bacteria or viruses. Furthermore, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that several people have died of stroke due to meningitis. However, doctors treating patients with stroke symptoms may not think to check for meningitis. Several people have had only minor headaches and no fever.
Doctors are now treating a flood of people in emergency rooms who are concerned about meningitis. Several clinics who administered tainted injections are recommending that people visit the clinic for an evaluation. Government health organizations recommend that anyone who has had this procedure recently and shows symptoms of meningitis should visit the emergency room.
Approximately 13,000 people were injected with epidural steroid shots, mostly to treat back pain. On September 26, New England Compounding Center recalled the shots, and on October 5, they expanded the recall to include all of their products. At least 137 people have gotten sick and 12 have died in 11 states.
The non-contagious outbreak continues to grow because fungal meningitis has an incubation period. No one knows the exact length of the incubation period. The disease usually shows symptoms within 4 weeks after exposure, but it could be shorter or longer potentially up to three months.
As thousands of people wait anxiously to see whether they develop symptoms, the CDC says that no illnesses have been linked to steroid injections for joint pain, and no other medicines from New England Compounding Center have been linked to disease. The CDC does not recommend prescribing anti-fungal medications as a precautionary measure, because the powerful drugs have severe side effects for a patient’s kidney and liver.
The CDC is also recommending that anyone who has had an epidural steroid shot since May 21, 2012 should check with their doctor to see if they received a recalled medicine. If so, the patient should watch for symptoms of fungal meningitis, which may include headache, fever, light sensitivity, slurred speech, stiff neck, new muscle weakness or numbness, and more. Patients who have these symptoms should seek emergency medical attention.
Several people have also had strokes due to fungal meningitis, which can occur when the fungus invades blood vessels. Doctors who treat strokes may not think to check for meningitis, because the complication is unusual. People who have received tainted epidural steroid injections should also watch for symptoms of stroke, which may include weakness, loss of movement or coordination on one side of the body, and more.
Do I have a Fungal Meningitis Lawsuit?
The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting fungal meningitis induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know has been injured by an outbreak of fungal meningitis from steroid shots, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Product Liability & Defective Drug Litigation Group or call toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.
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