October 9, 2012 — Patients who received epidural steroid injections at St. Thomas Outpatient Neurosurgery Center may be at risk of fungal meningitis. St. Thomas Hospital is treating 25 people for the disease. The Neurosurgery Center closed on September 20 and officials at the hospital have been working to contact anyone who may have been exposed. Experts are recommending that anyone who received an epidural steroid injection since May 21 should come to the hospital for an evaluation.
Hospital officials are working with the Tennessee Department of Health, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to address the outbreak. The contaminated steroid injections were produced in Massachusetts, at New England Compounding Center, which has voluntarily rescinded their pharmacy license, recalled all of their products, and shut down.
At least 105 people have fallen ill after receiving contaminated epidural steroid injections, which are commonly administered in outpatient clinics that provide pain management therapy. Tennessee has the highest number of illnesses and deaths — 35 people have fallen ill and four people have died.
St. Thomas Hospital officials said:
“We want to make sure that you are not having any problems related to your procedure. If you had an epidural steroid injection at the Saint Thomas Outpatient Neurosurgery Center and are experiencing any of the following symptoms, please contact us immediately or come directly to the Saint Thomas Hospital Emergency Department.”
Symptoms of fungal meningitis are often mild initially, and include nausea, neck stiffness, confusion, dizziness or loss of balance, headache that gets worse, new weakness, fever, and more. Some people have suffered strokes due to meningitis.
Fungal meningitis is an inflammation of the meninges (the lining around the brain and spinal cord) caused by fungal spores that infect a person’s cerebrospinal fluid. The disease is life-threatening and can cause permanent neurological impairment or death. Treatment often lasts several months.
Do I have a Meningitis Lawsuit?
The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting meningitis induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know has been injured by meningitis due to epidural steroid injections, 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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