CDC says three more U.S. deaths from meningitis outbreak

Tue Oct 9, 2012 3:06pm EDT

1 of 4. Pharmaceutical compounding company New England Compounding Center (NECC), a producer of the steroid methylprednisolone acetate, is seen in Framingham, Massachusetts October 8, 2012. The drug has been linked to a rare form of meningitis that has so far killed eight people. The company, which earlier recalled three lots of the painkiller, has suspended its operations while an investigation proceeds. It expanded its recall on Saturday to all products compounded and distributed at its Framingham facility. Health authorities scrambled on Monday to identify more cases of the widening outbreak of meningitis, including enlisting local police.

Credit: Reuters/Jessica Rinaldi

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(Reuters) - Three more people have died from fungal meningitis linked to steroid injections, bringing the total to 11 deaths since the outbreak began last month, the Centers for Disease Control said on Tuesday.

The CDC said the number of meningitis cases in the United States linked to the outbreak reached 119 on Tuesday, up 14 from Monday.

New Jersey reported its first case of meningitis linked to possible contamination of steroid injections, bringing the number of states affected by the outbreak to 10.

The widening outbreak has alarmed U.S. health officials and focused attention on regulations of pharmaceutical compounding companies such as the one that produced the drugs, the New England Compounding Center Inc in Framingham, Massachusetts.

The steroid is used as a painkiller, usually to alleviate back pain, and could have been injected in some 13,000 patients, authorities have said.

Meningitis is an infection of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord. Patients show a variety of symptoms from one to four weeks after their injections.

(Reporting By Greg McCune; Editing by Paul Thomasch)

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Comments (2)
Harry079 wrote:
At this rate if 13,000 got the injection you can expect around 1,000 deaths.

Whoever didn’t do their job those people need to go to jail over this.

Start at the CEO and work your way down.

Oct 09, 2012 2:50pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
tyg wrote:
you might want to work your way around and also look at the massachussets board of pharmacy:

Sophia Pasedis was appointed to the 11-member Massachusetts Board of Registration in Pharmacy in June 2004 and was reappointed in 2008. She is vice president of regulatory ­affairs and compliance at Ameridose, according to the company’s website.

Oct 13, 2012 11:23pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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