Meningitis Cases Are Linked to Steroid Injections in SpineAccording to the CDC, the greatest risk of contracting fungal meningitis from contaminated spinal and joint infections is within the first 6 weeks after receiving the injection. Since the three lots of steroids were recalled on September 26,that window of symptom watch for the majority of people will be ending in the middle of next week. The CDC stresses that even after the six weeks are over, some patients may still develop symptoms. As of October 31, the CDC reported that people in 19 meningtiis have been confirmed to be infected with fungal meningitis related to spinal steroid shots back pain meningitis joint injections. Currently, the meninfitis estimates that 14, people have received the injections from trenbolone 200 dosage of three infected batches. The CDC has a list of pain clinics that have received the contaminated steroids. If you or a loved one who has received an epidural injection after May 21, develops any of sterkid symptoms, call your doctor right away.
WARNING: Meningitis Outbreak Tied to Steroid Back Pain Injections
April Pettit, an infectious diseases specialist at Vanderbilt University , was worried about her patient. He had been ill with meningitis for two weeks, he was not getting better, and she could not figure out why. Antibiotics , the usual treatment, were not helping. Bacteria, the usual suspects, could not be found. On the morning of Sept. It was the hospital lab, with an answer at last — but a troubling one. The patient was so ill that he could no longer communicate, so Dr.
Pettit spoke to the family. Had he done anything unusual in the weeks before he became ill? The answer alarmed her. He had had a steroid injection in his spinal area to relieve back pain — a common treatment, administered to millions of people in the United States every year. Pettit called the State Health Department. Doctors suspect that the steroid medicine was contaminated with the fungus. The meningitis does not spread from person to person.
Officials said it was not possible to predict the extent of the outbreak yet. Thirteen of the patients have been in Tennessee, and one in North Carolina. Two of the cases were new as of Tuesday, and health officials have said that there could be more cases and that other states could be affected. David Reagan, the chief medical officer for the Tennessee Health Department.
Center staff members notified more than patients who received injections of the suspect drug. Another Tennessee clinic, the Specialty Surgery Center in Crossville, also received shipments of the possibly contaminated drug and was notifying patients. Health officials emphasized that the problem appeared to come from the medication and not the clinics themselves, and that the clinics had immediately cooperated by notifying patients and, in the case of Saint Thomas, shutting down when the outbreak was recognized.
But the officials have released few details about the source of the drug, saying the investigation was continuing. All the patients who became ill were treated with one or more injections between July 30 and Sept. That means that some patients may become ill in the next few weeks. Symptoms can include headache , dizziness , fever , loss of balance and slurred speech.
At a news conference on Tuesday, state health officials said some of the patients were recovering, but some were in critical condition. The outbreak has led to a nationwide recall of the drug that all the patients received.
The drug, preservative-free methylprednisolone acetate, was prepared by one compounding pharmacy, a pharmacy that prepares drug mixtures or solutions for hospitals and clinics. Health officials have declined to name the pharmacy or release lot numbers of the drug, but a spokesman for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that all of the suspect lots had been recalled and that the pharmacy had stopped producing the medication.
View all New York Times newsletters. Scientists are also testing other medications used in giving the spinal injections, like numbing agents and antiseptic wipes. They say the cause has not been determined for sure. The treatments are called lumbar epidural steroid injections, but they are not the same as the epidurals commonly given to women for childbirth or Caesarean sections — something that health officials wanted to make clear to avoid creating alarm among women who have recently given birth.
William Schaffner, the chairman of preventive medicine at Vanderbilt, said that this type of fungal meningitis was serious and difficult to treat, and that the C. The disease can also be difficult to diagnose, because unlike other types of meningitis, it can cause strokes, and when a patient has stroke symptoms, doctors may not look for an infection as well. In addition, the organism can be difficult to grow in cultures of spinal fluid from patients, making the diagnosis even more of a challenge.
Detecting and treating the disease as early as possible gives the best chance of curing it, Dr. Schaffner said, so getting the word out to alert both doctors and patients to the symptoms is important. Others doctors also wanted more information. Christopher Standaert, a specialist in spinal and neuromusculoskeletal care at the University of Washington in Seattle, and a spokesman for the North American Spine Society, said he hoped that health officials would release the name of the product, the manufacturer and the lot numbers thought to be involved in the outbreak so that clinics could make sure it was not on their shelves.
It would be nice if they told the hospitals. Tell us what you think. Please upgrade your browser. Newsletter Sign Up Continue reading the main story Please verify you're not a robot by clicking the box. You must select a newsletter to subscribe to. You agree to receive occasional updates and special offers for The New York Times's products and services.
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