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Texas Compounding Pharmacy Recalls Calcium Injections

August 12, 2013 — Texas-based compounding pharmacy Specialty Compounding, LLC has recalled all lots of all medications compounded since May 9, 2013. At least 15 people developed bacterial infections after receiving IV infusions of calcium gluconate at two hospitals in Corpus Christi.

Hospitals where patients developed bacterial infections:

  • Corpus Christi Medical Center Bay Area
  • Corpus Christi Medical Center Doctors Regional

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reported that the patients received calcium injections, which are normally prescribed for medical conditions caused by low calcium.

“Then the patients developed bacterial bloodstream infections caused by Rhodococcus equi. These infections are thought to be related to the infusions. Cultures from an intact sample of calcium gluconate compounded by Specialty Compounding show growth of bacteria that are consistent with Rhodococcus species.”

Rhodococcus equi is a soil-borne bacteria that does not normally cause outbreaks in humans. It is mostly found in domesticated animals (especially horses and pigs) but it can infect humans with weak immune systems who breathe the bacteria in the air.

The FDA is asking Congress for increased authority to regulate compounding pharmacies throughout the United States. About one year ago, contaminated epidural steroid injections from New England Compounding Pharmacy were associated with an outbreak of fungal meningitis. At least 749 people were injured in 20 states, including 63 people who died.

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